I Told You Todd Akin Was Missouri’s Freakiest Conservative

I told you so. Todd Akin is freaky. He’s bizarre, outlandish, queer. He’s unusually strange. Weird. Dangerously dizzy—and “legitimately stupid.”

Watch the offending 30 seconds below and notice the response of the interviewer, Charles Jaco. He has just been told something—by a man who wants to be Missouri’s U.S. Senator—that is monumentally dumb, offensive, and obviously newsworthy. What does Jaco say? “Let go to the, uh, uh, economy.”

Nope, let’s go to the tape:

Claire McCaskill said in response:

It is beyond comprehension that someone can be so ignorant about the emotional and physical trauma brought on by rape.

Nope. It is perfectly comprehensible, if you have snooped around in Todd Akin’s trove of extremism. It’s just that this time he is on a national stage for all to see and hear.

Sarah Steelman, Akin’s opponent in the primary (and who I thought would win), tweeted:

Todd Akin’s remarks about “legitimate rape” were inexcusable, insulting, and embarrassing to the GOP.

Notice it is the GOP she is worried about in her tweetful response. And there is reason to worry. So much reason that the Romney campaign, which is directing the larger war on women,  issued a statement about Akin’s “legitimate rape” comment and his willingness to force rape victims to bear the rapist’s child:

Gov. Romney and Congressman Ryan disagree with Mr. Akin’s statement, and a Romney-Ryan administration would not oppose abortion in instances of rape.

Well, first of all, Paul Ryan can’t disagree with Akin’s statement all that much because he too opposes abortion even in rape cases and has sponsored legislation that would grant “personhood” rights to embryos.

Second, that meek statement obviously won’t be enough to stop the tide that is coming. The consensus on Morning Joe this morning, including Republican Joe Scarborough, was that this is a test of leadership for Mittens. Scarborough, who said, “this is a nightmare for Republicans,” and that it “hurts every candidate,” forcefully argued that this should be Romney’s “Sister Souljah moment,” in which Romney should call Akin “every day” and tell him to “get out!

Well, it will be very difficult for Romney to express much outrage over Todd Akin, when by his side as his running mate is a man who sponsored an outrageous anti-abortion bill as one of the first acts of the Tea Party House.

Zerlina Maxwell of the New York Daily News wrote:

Akin and Ryan were the original co-sponsors of the controversial bill H.R. 3, “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act,” which initially included language which changed the definition of “rape” to “forcible rape,” until public pressure forced the bill’s supporters to remove that unacceptable and narrow definition. As I wrote previously, Paul Ryan is not just anti-choice, his anti-choice views are extreme and just plain bad for all women.

So, if Romney comes down too hard on Akin, he will have to answer an important question:

In what way is Akin’s “legitimate rape” comment different from the language that Paul Ryan and Todd Akin used in H.R. 3’s original version?

And as long as he is fumbling around trying to answer that question, he is only reminding women across America why they can’t trust Republicans with their personal life decisions.*

As for Akin, he may survive this train wreck, and given the hatred for Mr. Obama in the hinder parts of Missouri—voting against Claire McCaskill is a vote against Obama, don’t you know—I am sure he would still overwhelmingly win my part of the state.

The bright side, though, is that perhaps folks in other, more sober parts of Missouri, will, as Claire McCaskill said this morning, pay attention to the race because,

This statement is kind of a window into Todd Akin’s mind.

And at least now, if Akin is not forced to withdraw from the race, he will have forced folks here in Missouri, and across the country, to look through that window and consider the craziness and creepiness within, a craziness and creepiness that also describes the minds of many Republican Tea Party candidates.


* My congressman, Billy Long, also sponsored H.R. 3’s original language, which I pointed out in February of 2011 in “Ozark Billy Long Signs On To Redefine Rape.’ 

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  1. ansonburlingame

     /  August 20, 2012

    All I read was the title to this blog. Whatever else you said is probably close to being correct.

    Here is my personal reaction to Akins statement and how it will probably affect my vote this November. Below is an email from me to one other person.


    “I agree. Akin should withdraw from the race. Trying to defend the Pro-life position in the extreme is impossible to do yet the zealots try to do it all the time. Had Santorum gained the GOP Presidential nomination I suspect such a debacle might have come from him as well.

    It is for exactly such reasons that I have long considered myself an independent conservative and will probably remain in such a political “state” for the rest of my life.

    Take this incident with Akin, add to it his call to immediately abolish two cabinet level agencies and God knows what else might be in his head and I don’t see how I can possibly vote for him. Does that mean I HAVE to vote for Clair? Seems like my only other choice is to simply NOT vote in the Senate election in MO.

    Two years ago I chose NOT to vote, as well, for Billy Long for the same reasons. I voted Dem instead but also knew Long was a shoo in around here. In this case I suspect the Senate vote may still be competitive thus a vote for Clair really sticks in my throat. But…..”.



  2. Treeske

     /  August 20, 2012

    So embarrassing! Does anyone still doubt the effects of Lead exposure?


  3. Jane Reaction

     /  August 20, 2012

    Anson, it is estimated that some 40% will sit out the election. What does that do to any projections?

    I am glad to see that Akin is totally exposed. Do we really want a guy that ignorant? Somebody find him a grade school biology text.


  4. ansonburlingame

     /  August 21, 2012

    Jane,(a rare and direct reply),

    Once in a blue moon I agree with you particularly when you drop the polemics. I suppose at least 40% sit out most Presidential elections, no matter how important they may be, politically.

    Given such lack of interest and/or awareness the question, seems to me, is are we better of with such folks NOT voting or should they just go cast a ballot with no thought behind that action?

    Consider the extremes of Tammny Hall -like “get out the vote” methods used by BOTH parties. Line up all the red necks or indigent folks, drive them in a bus to the polls and tell them which boxes to check. Is that in the best interests of American democracy?

    I am not trying to debate the legality or even morality of such efforts. I only try to decide if “one man one vote” when the “man” voting has no idea what he is voting for or why he is doing so.

    It is also not a “shot” at Dems alone. Again, Both side seem to do it as far as I can tell.

    The Akin debacle has now turned what should have been a strong and reasonable political choice with MANY different issues being at stake down to one of true radicals on the right trying to overcome a terrible and indefensible misstatement of just about everything dealing with birth control and government intervention, one way or the other, into that matter.

    As far as I am concerned as well, this misdeed by Akin wil NOT “go away”, at least for me and probably many non-Tea Party conservatives. I “know” what Akin was TRYING to say. But as well, in his “heart” I believe that he and others feel that abortion should NEVER be an option and government force should be used to enforce such a belief.

    To me that is like a national candidate saying we would NEVER use nuclear weapons, no matter what, period.

    Our national politics has slowly moved to more and more “NEVERS”, from both sides and such positions, regardless of the side are simply indefensible, in my view.

    As far as abortion goes, Clair has had it correct in my view for a very long time with the “Safe, legal and RARE” approach. To me it is OK to argue about “Rare”, from a moral perspective. But as I have said before, “rare” should be a personal choice by and large, not one for government to impose. However folks can come up with an anecdote challenging my view of “rare” as well. That’s pure politics however, not morality as such.



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