Amid a growing chorus of Republican and conservative demands for Karl Rove to remove himself from GOP campaign efforts after the strategist jested about the murder of Rep. Todd Akin, Americans are now petitioning Mitt Romney to “dump” Rove.
On Aug. 31, Bloomberg Businessweek reported that Rove told donors at the Republican National Convention, “We should sink Todd Akin. If he’s found mysteriously murdered, don’t look for my whereabouts!”
The WND petition, addressed to Romney, states, “Rove
has disgraced himself by 'joking' about the murder of a member of the U.S. House of Representatives and candidate for the U.S. Senate" and that his "continued active participation and leadership in the party's effort to regain control of the U.S. Senate, elect you as president and bolster Republican control of the House is both demoralizing and distracting for your campaign and the crucial elections across the country for the U.S. Congress."
The petition urges Romney to "take decisive action to denounce Karl Rove's statement to a group of major Republican donors and urge him to step aside from all political activities and public appearances for the duration of the campaign."
As WND reported, William Murray, who heads the Government is Not God Political Action Committee and chairs the Religious Freedom Coalition, said Rove’s comment “was so distasteful as to shame the entire Republican Party.”
Conservative icon and founder of the Eagle Forum Phyllis Schlafly echoed the calls for Rove’s resignation.
“Karl Rove has made himself toxic to Republicans by his incredibly offensive and dangerous statement suggesting the murder of Congressman Todd Akin of Missouri,” Schlafly said in a statement. “Any candidate or network who hires Rove will now be tarnished with this most malicious remark ever made in Republican politics.”
The Associated Press reported that Rove apologized for the comments, and Akin campaign adviser Rick Tyler said the candidate accepted the apology.
But Schlafly said it’s not enough.
“A private phone call by Rove to Akin to sort of apologize does not erase the public offense,” she said. “At the very least Rove should make a public apology. But even that can’t wipe out his gross political mistake.
“Rove has been calling on Todd Akin to resign,” she continued, “but the one who should resign because he made an embarrassing, malicious and downright stupid remark is Karl Rove.”
Joseph Farah, founder and CEO at WND.com, has said Rove’s “got to go.”
“Here’s a guy who went ballistic over an innocent slip of the tongue – demanding that the GOP candidate for Senate in Missouri quit the race over it,” Farah said. “Now it’s time for Rove to follow his own advice.”
Farah said Rove is “a major liability to the Republican effort.”