Biden implies Romney, Ryan lack 'moral courage' to condemn rape comments
October 26th, 2012
06:43 PM ET
6 years ago

Biden implies Romney, Ryan lack 'moral courage' to condemn rape comments

Kenosha, Wisconsin (CNN) – Vice President Joe Biden on Friday implied that Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan lack the "moral courage" to condemn comments from Republican Senate candidates Richard Mourdock from Indiana earlier this week as well as Missouri's Todd Akin from two months ago.

During a campaign event in Kenosha, Wisconsin, the vice president repeated a line being pushed by the Obama campaign against the Republican presidential nominee and his running mate: that the two are on the wrong side of women's issues.

- Follow the Ticker on Twitter: @PoliticalTicker

- Check out the CNN Electoral Map and Calculator and game out your own strategy for November.

"You know, as hard as they try, our friends cannot run from their record," Biden said.

In the next breath, Biden waded into the controversies surrounding Mourdock and Akin.

"And here's the truth: they've made it very, very clear…that they do not believe a woman has a right to control her own body. They can't even get up the gumption to condemn the statements made by two of their candidates for United States Senate," Biden said without specifically naming the Republican ticket.

"It's not enough to tell me you don't agree. It's having the moral courage to stand up and say what they said was wrong, simply wrong."

Romney has endorsed Mourdock's bid, the only Senate candidate he's backed this cycle. And, just before the controversy, Mourdock's campaign began running an ad featuring Romney praising the candidate.

After Mourdock's comment on rape, Romney released a statement through a spokeswoman, saying that he did not agree with Mourdock's words. But the campaign has not urged Mourdock to pull the ad.

Some have called on Romney to pull his endorsement of Mourdock altogether.

All of this stems from Mourdock's statement about believing that abortion should not be a permitted exception for rape victims in a Tuesday debate with opponent, Democratic Rep. Joe Donnelly.

"I struggled with it myself for a long time, but I came to realize life is a gift from God, and I think even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen," said Mourdock, currently Indiana's state treasurer.

Facing a storm of criticism, Mourdock - the next day – expressed remorse if his words offended anyone.

As for Akin, the Missouri candidate said, two months ago, that "legitimate rape" rarely results in pregnancy. In that case, Romney and other Republicans urged Akin to end his senate bid – something Akin refused to do.

Akin later said he misspoke.

Filed under: 2012 • Joe Biden • Richard Mourdock • Todd Akin
soundoff (38 Responses)
  1. Sarah Faircloth

    Sarah implies Biden lacks "moral compass" with his cue ball comment to the fallen SEAL's father

    October 26, 2012 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  2. California Gary

    For some time I have struggled to understand what Akin meant by the term "legitimate rape", thanks to candidate Mourdock's statement, I finally understand what it is. A legitimate rape is one in which God intended for it to happen. It's all so clear to me, these guys move through life in a world a little different from the rest of us.

    October 26, 2012 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  3. Michael

    Who votes for these crazy GOP candidates for the senate?
    Seriously – who would vote for such losers?
    Can someone from, say, Indiana, explain this to me?

    October 26, 2012 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  4. Nick

    This guy Biden is a pure and complete goon!

    October 26, 2012 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  5. Natch

    Pretty sure that photo shows the moment right before Uncle Joe's foot flies right up into his mouth!!

    October 26, 2012 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  6. DW

    Right on Mr. Biden!

    October 26, 2012 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  7. DENNA

    V.P. Biden that right. Robme/Lyan Ryan may not agree, but they are afraid to alienate anyone who does agree, and I promise, many do agree. Cowards.

    October 26, 2012 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  8. Ann Wilson

    Wives and single women, when you get in the voting both forget about what your husband expects you to do. Vote
    for women's freedom of choice for the sake of yourselves, your daughters and your sisters.

    October 26, 2012 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  9. Romney Hood's a FRAUD

    LOL. Condemn it??! THEY SUPPORT IT!!!

    October 26, 2012 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  10. GayAtheist

    The Vice-President is right. I agree 100%.

    October 26, 2012 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  11. jackson

    You know, I never really thought about why Obama's school records are sealed until yesterday at the doctor's office I listened to the waiting room T.V. (MSNBC) and heard the pundits in full spin control – mocking, distracting, misdirecting – all the usual stuff. Why? Now I am wondering – and what do you know? So hard to find anything at the usual media sites. Curiouser and curiouser. Romney needs to release his tax returns and Obama needs to release his school records.

    October 26, 2012 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  12. EarlHigh

    Why would Ryan condemn the comments about rape pregnancy? He is quoted saying the same thing in a televised Aug 24th interview. You can search for yourself and if you don't his words were "pregnancy from rape is another form of conception".

    October 26, 2012 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  13. 3w2q1

    Ryan cosponsored a bill reffering to "legitimate rape" we should keep that in mind even if he is at the bottom of the ticket not the top.

    October 26, 2012 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  14. Marty, FL

    Romney endorses Mourdock and adds Ryan to his ticket with the same positions, who co-sponsored 'forcible' rape with Akin.

    Wrong for women.

    No wonder Romney is running away from interviews now instead taking personal responsibility.

    October 26, 2012 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  15. Squigman

    He says the truth. Romney, has never once challenged the people in his party for many of the things said about the president, or for that matter the office of the president. Any crack pot in the republican party, can say anything about almost any subject and no matter how racist, hateful or just plain stupid, Romney, says nothing. He stated that he didn't agree with Mourdock, but still backed him for senate. Show no backbone at all.

    October 26, 2012 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  16. Ray E. (Georgia)

    Well Joe,
    Let's talk about the 16 Trillion Dollar Federal Debt Rape the Liberal's, and you have foisted on us for the last 75 years. You're selling Snake Oil Joe. Too bad a lot of people are still buying it.

    October 26, 2012 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  17. Larry L

    Romney and Lyin' Ryan are constantly proven to be pathological liars. The fact checkers prove everything they say to be a lie, distortion or a flip-flop from a previous position. Does honesty mean anything to Republicans?

    October 26, 2012 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  18. GI Joe

    Republicans seem to want more unwanted babies born and on welfare. That way they can control them and force them to enlist them in their Army at 15 or 16 years of age – boys AND girls. Wait and see.

    October 26, 2012 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  19. nina

    women should really do their homework b4 they 14 of the republican handbook in romney/ryan's plans – invetro- fertalization will not be allowed – abortions are illegal even in the instance of in other words, it will be illegal for a woman who WANTS a baby through IVF and a women who becomes pregnant via rape HAS to have the baby.
    how much do the american people want taken from them? its unbelievable to us around the world how a person who wants to be the leader of your country can morph into a completely different ideology in a few weeks and half the people actually fall for it. Wow!

    October 26, 2012 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  20. Justin

    Obama had two Seals murdered and Biden wants to talk about moral courage? Maybe we should have Biden and Obama replace those they had murdered.

    October 26, 2012 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  21. Cnnz

    Our White House lacked the moral courage to act when needed the most. Pathetic!

    October 26, 2012 09:48 pm at 9:48 pm |
  22. BinaryTooth2

    But Obama has great morals by denying CIA requests to provide support to our ambassador to Libya and 3 other Americans as the battle raged for 7 hours. Obama played politics with 4 American's lives, so what makes you believe he cares about your life?

    October 26, 2012 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
  23. BinaryTooth

    Obama only cares about Obama. To heck with any American who stands in his way.

    October 26, 2012 09:55 pm at 9:55 pm |
  24. wolfpackbob

    It is The Economy, Mr. President. Your Economy, Mr. President. You built that.

    October 26, 2012 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  25. Frustrated Former GOP

    It's amazing that a lot of these anti abortion folks are also, anti food stamps, anti Medicaid, and anti welfare. They want to protect the unborn, to later murder this "child" by making it starve to death. Hey GOP, if you are not willing to raise taxes to help these poor kids, why don't you just tell the mother the get an abortion. If a poor women gets an abortion, she did the Romney/Ryan folks a major favor. Now you have one less member of the 47% to worry about!!!

    October 26, 2012 10:19 pm at 10:19 pm |
1 2