Washington (CNN) – Missouri Senate Candidate Todd Akin is trying to turn controversy he created about rape and women on its head – making a direct appeal to conservative women in a new television ad featuring a woman who says she was raped and had an abortion.
"I'm a single mother – a woman who's had an abortion. I've been raped in my past," says the woman who says her name is Kelly.
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Though she doesn't say she regrets having an abortion in the ad, it is implied. She makes it clear she now thinks her abortion was a mistake in a longer companion video on Akin's website.
"The reason that I'm voting for Todd and that I'm so proud of him is because he defends the unborn. He's a kind man, a compassionate man. He has so much integrity," says Kelly.
She does not say that her aborted pregnancy was a result of rape, and a campaign spokesman said he is unsure.
Akin created major controversy and infuriated national Republicans when he suggested that a woman's body could somehow block a pregnancy resulting from rape. He later tried to clarify the way he phrased that, but stands by his position that abortion should be banned, even in the case of rape.
The ad also features another woman named Zoya who offers a broader testimonial, saying she emigrated from Russia when she was young, and she has gotten to know the Akin family and supports him.
Akin's Democratic rival, Sen. Claire McCaskill, also began airing a television ad Thursday suggesting Akin was "unfit" to serve in the U.S. Senate, featuring a clip of Mitt Romney denouncing Akin's rape comments and a news report about Akin not attending the Republican National Convention in August.
Meanwhile, this new television ad is one of several Akin's campaign is airing in this final week with the help of an infusion of mystery money – funds from the Missouri state party which may have originated from National Republicans, who had vowed not to put a dime into the race when they were trying to force Akin to step aside.
The Missouri Republican Party joined in a $387,000 ad buy with the Akin campaign. It is unclear where the state party got its money, and aides to the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) told CNN they will not comment on whether it came from them.
Calls to the Missouri Republican Party were not returned, and Akin adviser Rick Tyler told CNN state party officials would not tell him where the funds originated.
After Akin refused to get out of the race, NRSC executive director Rob Jesmer opened the door to giving Akin money, despite saying earlier it would not happen.
Now more than ever, Republicans may need to snatch this Democratic seat in order to retake the majority in the Senate, since prospects of GOP pick ups elsewhere in the country are more up in the air than Republicans had anticipated earlier this year.
GOP sources say they think they will likely lose Scott Brown's seat in Massachusetts. They also believe Maine's GOP seat now held by retiring Olympia Snowe will be won by independent Angus King.
All in all, that would mean Republicans would have to pick up six Democratic seats to have a clear 51 seat majority – and their options would be even more limited without Akin winning in Missouri.
Republicans are playing offense trying to turn Senate seats like Montana, North Dakota, Virginia, Ohio and Connecticut red. But several of those races are neck-and-neck and hardly in the bag for the GOP. The problem for Republicans is they're are now playing defense in a growing number of competitive open GOP seats, like Indiana and Arizona
Although public polls in Missouri show Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill ahead – some show Akin nipping at McCaskill's heels.
A new Mason Dixon poll of likely Missouri voters had McCaskill at 45%, Akin at 43%, and 8% unsure.
Missouri is a conservative state, especially on social issues like abortion, and Republicans there are hoping those undecided voters will break for Akin.
The National GOP that shunned Akin and tried to push him to step aside won't say whether they are now giving him 11th hour financial help, but he does have a lot more cash than ever before to close out the race.
Tyler tells CNN there is about $1.7 million in Missouri for Akin, if you combine the campaign's $300,000, money from the state party, and donations from a smattering of outside groups like the Family Research Council, which stood by Akin through the controversy.
My gosh....is there no end of these tools. The ultra right has no place in a civilized society. The only way to get rid of them is to NOT vote for them. Starting with Akin. How literally IGNORANT can a person be??....WOW!!!....
Was that a "legitimate" rape? Did Kelly's body naturally reject the onslaught with "ways to try to shut that whole thing down", or did the legal abortion solve her problem?
Hmm... 'nuf said.
Poloticians hire actors for their commercials. So this is a lie .
If Mittens is elected, we can all say "Welcome to America, Tealiban Party. If you think President Obama's so-called "socialism," is scary, just wait to see what happens if MIttens wins. Some of you who THINK things will be better for you, at the expense of other people, will begin to realize YOU ARE "the other people." Karma is a pistol!
Mitt the twit said he did not support akin, but is giving him money for adds. Flip, flop. Just another lie from mitt the twit.
The gop has as much credibility as akins the abortion king , and where did they find braindead Kelly ????? She's probably atkins hillbilly cousins !!!
This is truly SAD. This guy doesn't know how to leave well enough alone does he?? I mean really he is down playing rape like it's no big deal. I can't with this guy
Please tell me what the difference between the Taliban and the GOP is? I can't see any.
Vote for Claire McCaskill Iowa. She represents the correct socialist views that will help bring the capitalist America to its knees, where it belongs.
Akin will will still beat Obamaclaire. If they want Obamacare repealed, it is the only alternative.
November 1, 2012 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
Give me whatever you are smoking. Akin will not win, just like you god Mitts will lose too! I just hope you have the guts to return to this board when all of this happen. I guess, just like Ted Nugent, you don't have the guts & will be crapping your pants!
I wonder whether a right winger has ever been struck by the irony that the health care of the entire nation is apparently not something the federal government should be involved in, but a tiny group of cells buried deeply in an individual woman's body should be a cause for legislation, regulation, and incarceration.
Is it possible to "late term abort" akin, and michelle bachman too?
How about looking into her background? was she paid? is she a S**T like they accused that college student who testified before COngress?
@ – My name is Hugo Chavez and I endorse my fellow leftist Barack Obama, Forward to SOCIALISM! Vote for Claire McCaskill Iowa. She represents the correct socialist views that will help bring the capitalist America to its knees, where it belongs.
Heck, we will get that same opportunity with Mittens. Capitalism is not a bad concept, but kissing the butt of the 1% is a bad concept.
"I'm a single mother" – mittens would take away your child as he did to women in his church.
"I've been raped in my past" – What an odd choice of words – kinda makes it sound like it happened multiple times.
It's a hoax - I've seen that woman on info-mercials before. She's a paid "actress".
Why take choices away from all women to make one filthy slimy republican man happy?