Eighteen months ago, then-Missouri Republican Senate candidate Todd Akin made an admittedly awkward description of rape, was abandoned by his own party and eventually lost to Democrat Claire McCaskill.
Monday night, on Megyn Kelly’s “The Kelly File” on the Fox News Channel, he broke his silence and charged that members of both parties were eager to make sure a true Reagan conservative wasn’t in Congress and asserted Democrats imposed a double standard.
He pointed out to Kelly that the Democrats own convention speaker, Bill Clinton, had a long history of facing claims of assault from women.
His own party’s leaders, he said, displayed arrogance, using his plight to argue social conservatives of his kind couldn’t get elected.
His ordeal began when he was asked in a local television interview in 2012 whether he would support abortion in the case of rape. His reply led to a firestorm of criticism, denunciation and ridicule by many, even in his own party, including presidential candidate Mitt Romney.
“If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down,” he said. “But let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work or something. You know, I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be on the rapist and not attacking the child.”
See Akin’s full answer:
At the time, Akin was ahead of McCaskill in the polls, and he never before had lost an election.
See Akin's interview, Part 1:
As an example of the Democrats' double standard, he pointed to the minimal reaction to gaffes by Barack Obama and Joe Biden when they campaigned for the White House. Obama claimed that he had visited 57 states in his campaign and had one left. Biden was videoed saying: "You cannot go to a 7-11 or a Dunkin Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent."
And that wasn't the worst, said Akin, whose opinions about pregnancy and rape expressed in the controversial interview now have been supported by a number of research studies.
He noted the sexual assault allegations against Clinton, who was the star of the Democratic Party convention that year.
"What's worse, a few words or a long history of abusive behavior?"Akin asked.
"Later, in an interview, she laughs about it," Akin said.
Akin clarified for Kelly that there are stress factors that can affect whether a victim gets pregnant, and he said that by "legitimate rape" he meant a "legitimate rape claim."
Regarding his party, he said: "The party bosses have got their own agenda. They have made me an example [that] a conservative can't get elected."
He said party political bosses, consequently, are selecting candidates for office, not allowing the voters to decide.
That, he said, is arrogance.
WND reported recently two new fertility studies reveal that stress in males and females both inhibits pregnancy, but the media still have not linked the noted results to Akin's comments.
He's written about his experience in "Firing Back: Taking on the Party Bosses and Media Elite to Protect Our Faith and Freedom." In the Monday commentary he explained: "When asked to comment about my instantly infamous 'legitimate rape' comment in my new book 'Firing Back,' I describe what Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney should have said: 'A credibly accused rapist is giving the keynote speech at the Democratic convention in two weeks, and you want me to denounce a decent, God-fearing man for his inelegant comments about rape? No, not happening, and if the truth hurts, put some ice on it.'"
Akin said that even though Politico reporters Anna Palmer and Tarini Parti had a copy of his book to work from for their July 10 article, "Todd Akin returns to national stage," they edited the text to read, "[Bill Clinton] is giving the keynote speech at the Democratic convention in two weeks."
He explained, "In removing the phrase 'a credibly accused rapist,' they not only stripped the logic from the quote ... but they also denied legitimacy to at least one solid rape accusation against Clinton."
"Known in government documents as 'Jane Doe No. 5,' Juanita Broaddrick made a highly credible claim under oath that Bill Clinton raped her when he was attorney general of the state of Arkansas."
"It was a real panicky, panicky situation," Broaddrick told Lisa Myers on NBC's "Dateline" in February 1999. "I was even to the point where I was getting very noisy, you know, yelling to 'Please stop.' And that's when he pressed down on my right shoulder and he would bite my lip."
Wrote Akin: "On the way out of the room, when Clinton saw her swollen lip, he famously said, 'Put some ice on that.'It was Broaddrick's testimony under oath in the Paula Jones investigation that persuaded a few key congressmen to proceed with impeachment proceedings against Clinton."
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Todd Akin, author of "Firing Back: Taking on the Party Bosses and Media Elite to Protect Our Faith and Freedom," is the former six-term U.S. representative for Missouri's second congressional district. A graduate of Worcester Polytechnic Institute and member of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Akin earned a M.Div. degree from Covenant Theological Seminary and worked in the private sector before entering Congress. He lives in St. Louis County.