Why Todd Akin Should Step Aside
The explosion of controversy surrounding the remarks of Missouri Repulican Senatorial candidate Todd Akin has surprised even me. Despite his apology for his gaffe Akin shows no signs of leaving the race. He was on a KTVI program in St. Louis, Missouri recently in which the talk show host asked Todd akin what his views were on whether not women who are raped should be able to have an abortion. Akin replied:
Well you know, people always want to try to make that as one of those things, well how do you, how do you slice this particularly tough sort of ethical question. First of all, from what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. 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.
I don’t think Akin’s remarks will have much effect in the long run. I think his statment was really stupid, but it might be too soon to write him off. As one political analyst points out, Missouri is a state that is more conservative in recent years and Akin’s opponent Claire McCaskill has problems too. Aside from her voting with the President’s proposals (like Obamacare) many times, she also owes a significant amount of money in back taxes that Todd Akin can use against her.
It might make sense for Todd Akin to step down since his poll numbers show him neck-and-neck with his opponent, whereas prior to his comments he was 11 points ahead. If Akin steps down it might show the Republican Party overall that the Tea Party is willing to be realistic as much as it is about its principles. Akin just handed the Democrats a means of being able to distract from the core issue that the President and his party have badly damaged the economy which has resulting in massive unemployment but with rewards and privileges given for his key constituents. His resignation can at least allow a reboot for the Missouri GOP so the Republican Party can gain control of the Senate.
The ultimate goal is to repeal Obamacare and Todd Akin may have mortally wounded himself politically to the point where the GOP might not grab control of Congress’s upper house. That would be a disaster.