Akin accepts apology from Rove over murder comment
August 31st, 2012
06:04 PM ET
2 years ago

Akin accepts apology from Rove over murder comment

(CNN) - Karl Rove, a former adviser to President George W. Bush and now head of the conservative super PAC American Crossroads, apologized on Friday to Rep. Todd Akin of Missouri after a reporter published biting words Rove used to describe the embattled Senate candidate.

"We should sink Todd Akin. If he's found mysteriously murdered, don't look for my whereabouts," Rove said Thursday at a private fundraiser, according to a Businessweek reporter who was not supposed to be there.

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Akin has brushed off criticism from many Republicans and Democrats alike over his remarks earlier this month that a woman's body has biological means of preventing pregnancy in 'legitimate rape.' He has refused to withdraw his candidacy and vows to continue campaigning against incumbent Sen. Claire McCaskill, a vulnerable Democrat.

Rick Tyler, an adviser to Akin, said the congressman received and accepted an apology from Rove by telephone on Friday after the comments were reported by multiple news outlets. News of the apology was first reported by the Associated Press.

"Karl's personal apology to Todd was appreciated and Todd did forgive him," Tyler said. "But because Karl has maliciously and disgracefully attempted to ruin Todd's solid reputation as a public servant, at a minimum, he should follow Todd's example and make his own contrition public."

The Businessweek reporter, Sheelah Kolhatkar, said in her article that she was invited to the fund-raiser as the guest of a financier whom she described as a "significant Republican donor."

"The financier knew that I was a journalist. At no point was I presented with, nor did I agree to, restrictions regarding the information I heard," Kolhatkar writes in the article. "Upon my arrival at the breakfast, I was not asked if I was a journalist. I gave my name, identified the person who had invited me, was handed a wristband, and ushered into the dining room."

Her story further details Rove's pleas for money from those at the event, a crowd of about 70 hedge fund billionaires and investors. It was held on the final morning of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida, on Thursday.

Rove, she writes, was raising money for Crossroads, which has spent tens of millions on conservative candidates and causes this cycle. In his remarks, he presented data from focus groups on how best to try to sway supporters of President Barack Obama to the GOP column this fall.

"'If you say he's a socialist, they'll go to defend him. If you call him a 'far out left-winger,' they'll say, 'no, no, he's not.'" The proper strategy, Rove declared, was criticizing Obama without really criticizing him-by reminding voters of what the president said that he was going to do and comparing it to what he's actually done. "If you keep it focused on the facts and adopt a respectful tone, then they're gonna agree with you," Kolhatkar writes.

Rove said the group is two-thirds on its way to reaching its $300 million fund-raising goal. According to Kolhatkar, Rove said $200 million was budgeted for the presidential race, $70 million for the Senate, and $32 million for the House.

American Crossroads spokesman Jonathan Collegio took issue with the reporter's presence at the closed event and questioned her journalistic standards.

"Bloomberg's reporter unethically misrepresented herself to gain access to a private meeting, while reporters who followed the SPJ code of ethics were turned away," Collegio said.

He was referring to the Society of Professional Journalists code of ethics, which includes the line: "Avoid undercover or other surreptitious methods of gathering information except when traditional open methods will not yield information vital to the public. Use of such methods should be explained as part of the story."

– CNN’s Gregory Wallace contributed to this report


Filed under: 2012 • Karl Rove
soundoff (199 Responses)
  1. Aces Full

    "If you keep it focused on the facts and adopt a respectful tone, then they're gonna agree with you," – Karl Rove

    Typical Republican smear tactics...oh, wait a minute...

    August 31, 2012 09:21 pm at 9:21 pm |
  2. nobikiniatoll

    Attack the messenger, SOP.

    August 31, 2012 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  3. cynthia

    Neo-conservatives using the GOP label: why some animals eat their young.

    August 31, 2012 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  4. DENNA

    LOL. I think Akin should replace that wuss Rience Pribus as chair of the GOP. He is MUCH more honest than the rest of the GOPers. It was fun watching the GOP tap dance around that refreshing bit of honesty.

    August 31, 2012 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
  5. Independent, in texas

    Rove should have mysteriuosly dissappeared a long time ago and took GW Bush and D cheeney with him then maybe the GOP would have a little better chance of winning. Bush/Cheeney left a wound on America thats going to take a long long time to heal.

    August 31, 2012 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
  6. Norm

    Show of hands, who thinks he was kidding? Is there a more vile lump of flesh in the entire planet? I would love to have five minutes alone with him.

    August 31, 2012 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  7. TheTraveler

    "The proper strategy, Rove declared, was criticizing Obama without really criticizing him-by reminding voters of what the president said that he was going to do and comparing it to what he's actually done."

    Sure, and let's totally forget how the efforts of an obstructionist Congress and Grover Norquist Republican puppets have helped stymie the efforts of the Obama Administration to do anything for Americans.
    Folks are quick to play "the blame game" but it takes cooperation between the 3 branches of our government to function properly. So, it's not all President Obama's fault that we're in the economic doldrums right now.

    August 31, 2012 09:48 pm at 9:48 pm |
  8. James PDX

    I still don't understand why Rove apologized for this. He's said and done so many far worse things.

    August 31, 2012 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  9. FlexSF

    Whats the problem, Rove, Akin is the fruit of your miserable seeds. Reap what you sow, you sick bigot.

    August 31, 2012 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  10. In Rove We Trust

    ' "'If you say he's a socialist, they'll go to defend him. If you call him a 'far out left-winger,' they'll say, 'no, no, he's not.'" The proper strategy, Rove declared, was criticizing Obama without really criticizing him-by reminding voters of what the president said that he was going to do and comparing it to what he's actually done. "If you keep it focused on the facts and adopt a respectful tone, then they're gonna agree with you," Kolhatkar writes. '

    Rove just admitted calling Obama Socialist and far-left are not facts. Yes, something we've known all along but think about all the misleading that was done around this, all the time and energy put into this utter falsehood by the Rove and Republicans instead of on jobs.

    August 31, 2012 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  11. Charlie from the North

    I am no fan of Akin for sure, But Karl Rove needs to be arrested for threatening a member of Congress.
    Even if the member is a knuckle dragging moron he is a member of Congress. You can bet that if James Carville had made such a threat Faux News would be all over him.

    August 31, 2012 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  12. Omar Dice

    Bills blocked by Republican­­­s.

    A short List: Incomplete­­­. VERY INCOMPLETE

    HR 12 – PaycheckFa­­irnessAct
    H.R. 320 - CJ’sHomePr­­otectionA­c­t
    H.R. 448 - ElderAbuse­­VictimsAc­t
    H.R. 466 – WoundedVet­­eranJobSe­c­urityAct
    H.R. 515 – Radioactiv­­­eImportD­e­terrence­Ac­t
    H.R. 577 – VisionCare orKidsAct
    H.R. 985 - FreeFlowof­­Informati­o­­nAct
    H.R. 1110 – PHONEActan­­d H.R. 1258 – TheTruthin­­CallerIDA­c­t
    H.R. 1168 - VeteransRe­­trainingA­c­t
    H.R. 1171 – HomelessVe­­teransRei­n­tegrat­i­on­Program­Rea­uthori­z­at­ion
    H.R. 1172 - RequiringL­­ist on VAWebsite of Organizati­­­onsProvi­d­ing
    Scholarshi­­­psforVet­e­rans
    H.R. 1262, WaterQuali­­ty Investment­­Act
    H.R. 1469 – ChildProte­­ctionImpr­o­vemen­ts­Ac­t
    H.R. 1514 – Juvenile Accountabi­­­lity Block Grants Program Reauthoriz­­­ation Act
    H.R. 1580 – Electronic Waste Research and Developmen­­­t Act
    H.R. 1585 - FIT Kids Act
    H.R. 1617 – Department of Homeland Security Component Privacy Officer
    Act. To install an office to guarantee privacy of citizens
    H.R. 1622 – Research and Developmen­­­t Programs for Natural Gas Vehicles
    H.R. 1727 - Managing Arson Through Criminal History (MATCH) Act
    H.R. 1796 – Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Prevention Act
    H.R. 1803 - Veterans Business Center Act
    H.R. 1875 - End the Trade Deficit Act <---
    H.R. 1933 – A Child Is Missing Alert and Recovery Center Act
    H.R. 2093 – Clean Coastal Environmen­­­t and Public Health Act
    H.R. 2142 – Government Efficiency­­­, Effectiven­­­ess, and Performanc­­­e
    Improvemen­­­t Act
    H.R. 2352 – Job Creation Through Entreprene­­­urship Act
    H.R. 2454 – American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009
    H.R. 2554 – National Associatio­­­n of Registered Agents and Brokers Reform Act
    H.R. 2664 – Promoting Transparen­­­cy in Financial Reporting Act
    H.R. 2693 – Oil Pollution Research and Developmen­­­t Program Reauthoriz­­­ation Act
    H.R. 2749 - Food Safety Enhancemen­­­t

    August 31, 2012 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  13. Planner922

    This story is just further proof that Karl Rove is the lowest form of bottom feeder I've thought he was since he came up with the original "swift-boaters."
    The American Crossroads is poorly named as what they are doing is not American.

    August 31, 2012 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm |
  14. HereticX

    Rove – still a fat, stupid ass. Just another GOP type who likes to talk big, act tough, but is softer than the Pillsbury doe-boy. It's unfortunate that other people will give this guy money who's sole mission is to tear people down. Granted Akin brought on a lot of heat to himself. But for Rove to say crap like THIS to a fellow party member shows the true underlying color of the party as a whole – YELLOW.

    August 31, 2012 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |
  15. LeRoy D. Meyer

    This comment by Karl Rove only proves what a complete idiot he really is!

    August 31, 2012 10:20 pm at 10:20 pm |
  16. Mark

    K. Rove remark on killing Atkins, is what Rove is all about. He is Republican trash, running ads for Romney and Ryan. Rove is such a Lier Rove is the hired by Republican to put out all the mis information. This guy is the Taliban of the Republican Party

    August 31, 2012 10:25 pm at 10:25 pm |
  17. ptny

    It certainly seems that the GOP need some anger management after the comments made below have many of us wondering just who the hell these guys think they are?

    They will be voted completely out of office come their next election.

    Rove about Akin…
    "We should sink Todd Akin. If he's found mysteriously murdered, don't look for my whereabouts," Rove said Thursday at a private fundraiser, according to a Businessweek reporter who was not supposed to be there.
    McConnell about Obama…
    “Well that is true, [making Obama a one-term President is] my single most important political goal along with every active Republican in the ...

    You have lost your government privileges to serve this country!

    August 31, 2012 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  18. Emerson

    A sad little weasle who the GOP keeps around to do their dirty work. Clean up campaign financing and keep a bright light shining on the facts and this pathetic excuse for a human being, and his ilk will fade away.

    August 31, 2012 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  19. JohnReedjr

    Why does America tolerate a bucket of slime like Rove to have any input into anything meaningful. He has hurt this country and continues to do so. He should be in jail for the harm he has caused.

    August 31, 2012 10:36 pm at 10:36 pm |
  20. frontgate

    So, what's wrong with a little sunlight in the deep, dark recesses of the republican underbelly?

    August 31, 2012 10:51 pm at 10:51 pm |
  21. InVt

    Everyone should notice that not one Republican has an issue with what Akin said, just how he said it. The 'forcible rape' and completely crap 'science' he talked about has been cited many times in the laws Republicans have backed and voted for.
    That a woman is a brood-mare to the state is what they legislate. How any woman can vote for these folks and their own slavery is beyond me

    August 31, 2012 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  22. alleygator

    Woops! forgot to add Gingrich.

    August 31, 2012 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
  23. stars

    OMG! this dude carl need to be investgated it"s no telling how many men this devil have had knock . and this fool Akin better watch his back.

    August 31, 2012 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  24. kenny

    how hillarious when they eat their own for telling the truth about what the party really thinks... lmao...

    August 31, 2012 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  25. bozo

    That's what Rove is, a murderer! Welkom to the Republikan Partie

    August 31, 2012 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
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