A Republican Senate nominee found himself in hot water on Sunday for suggesting that instances of “legitimate rape” rarely result in pregnancy.
Todd Akin, a Republican who’s locked in a tight campaign in Missouri to unseat Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill, was answering a question regarding his position on abortion rights in instances when a woman is a victim of rape.
“People always want to make it into one of those things — well, how do you slice this particularly tough ethical question,” Akin said in an interview on KTVI-TV, video of which was circulated by the Democratic super PAC American Bridge.
“First of all, from what I understand from doctors, [pregnancy from rape] is really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down,” Akin said.
Regarding his opinion on whether to allow for an abortion in such instances, Akin added: “But let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work or something. I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be on the rapist and not attacking the child.”
In a statement, Akin said that he had misspoken.
“In reviewing my off-the-cuff remarks, it’s clear that I misspoke in this interview and it does not reflect the deep empathy I hold for the thousands of women who are raped and abused every year.”
Hundreds of thousands of women all over the world have had pregnancies resulting from rape. Comments like these are ignorant and deny women the opportunity to terminate these pregnancies. Can politicians and people of influence think before they speak please!