August 20th, 2012
07:54 PM ET
9 years ago

GOP chair: Akin should drop out, skip convention

(CNN) - The Republican National Committee chairman called on Rep. Todd Akin Monday to exit the U.S. Senate race in Missouri, even urging the congressman not to attend the party's convention next week in Tampa.

"I would prefer that Todd Akin do the right thing for our party and our candidates, and I would prefer him not come," Reince Priebus said on CNN's "Erin Burnett OutFront."

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Akin, a Missouri Republican, has faced severe backlash from both Republicans and Democrats since making a controversial comment Sunday regarding rape and pregnancy. The six-term congressman, who recently became the GOP challenger against incumbent Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill, said in a television interview that a woman's body is capable of preventing pregnancy in cases of "legitimate rape."

Following an uproar over his remark, he apologized in a radio interview on Monday, saying he meant to say "forcible rape" and acknowledged that women "do become pregnant" during such instances.

But Akin insisted he would continue to pursue his Senate bid. Later on Twitter, he vowed to stay in the race and called on supporters to donate to his campaign.

Priebus, however, joined a chorus of Republicans urging Akin to drop out of the running.

"If it was me, and I wouldn't say anything that dumb as he has, but if it was me, and I had an opportunity to let someone else run to actually give ourselves a better chance of winning, I would step aside," Priebus said.

According to Missouri election law, Akin has until Tuesday evening to drop out of the race with little difficulty. He can choose to withdraw at a later date, but such an exit would require more paperwork and involve a court order. It would also give Republicans less time to build a campaign for the new nominee against McCaskill, a Democrat the GOP deems vulnerable in this year's election.

Referring to Akin's statement as "biologically stupid" and "bizarre," Priebus on Monday said he's "hopeful" the congressman hears the numerous calls for his departure from the race.

"This is not mainstream talk that he's referring to and his descriptions of whatever an illegitimate rape is. We're hoping he hears these things," Priebus said.

- CNN's Ashley Killough contributed to this report.

soundoff (42 Responses)
  1. spenteco

    I betcha money lil Reince was there or wishes he was. This is totally indicative of the warped GOP. I am sure my Congressman Stephen Fincher was right there swimming along with his old lady. Those gospel singers are also some great ambassadors for the U.S.

    August 20, 2012 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  2. bertha59

    Remember "Dumb and Dumber"? Well this guy would be included in the next of the series: "Dumb, Dumber, and More Dumber."

    August 20, 2012 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  3. Freddie

    Now watch all the GOP front-runners distance themselves from this pucker-butt. That's it, guys, split apart again!! You're going to lose!

    August 20, 2012 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  4. pn

    Maybe the GOP should distance themselves from the FRC and Tony Perkins when they are at it.

    August 20, 2012 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  5. bb

    The snakes have begun to eat each other.

    August 20, 2012 08:25 pm at 8:25 pm |
  6. george of the jungle

    even though the repos argee with this clown they are running away in droves trying to distance themselves from his idiot remarks.Even the tea baggers are running and paul ryan who worked with the dunce to craft abortion bills acts like he don't know him. Beware ladies they all really think like him but are afraid they won't get elected if you find out. Vote all repos out. Forward. You noticed how fadt mitt came out with his statement. After the president and after the uproar.

    August 20, 2012 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  7. Donkey Party

    Prince Riebus says dumb things every time he opens his mouth. The only concern he has is making sure people believe the GOP lies.

    August 20, 2012 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  8. griffbos

    lets be honest, He said what he honestly deels and what many in my party believe

    August 20, 2012 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  9. Joe from CT, not Lieberman

    So I see the Republican Party's Afterthought (sorry, I mean Chariman) found a reason to be in the news again. Too bad he is a "me too" for the boys with the long pants instead of having anything original to say.

    August 20, 2012 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  10. Desmond, a Canadian

    Ask Jung and he will probably tell you that the GOP wants to get rid of Akin in such a hurry because he represents that very strong, even main, side of the party that it would rather not admit exists

    August 20, 2012 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |

    umm?? Gop is trying to use the scapegoat to save the female vote..........but Rush L...already has in you hot water...oh why didn't the GOP ask Rush to leave his show ummmm?

    August 20, 2012 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  12. Buddhabill

    Priebus – if these remarks were 'biologically stupid' and 'bizarre', are you going to apply the same standard across the board with other GOP candidates? Is the assertion that humans walked with dinosaurs any less 'biologically stupid' or that the Earth is less than 10,000 years old any less 'bizarre', given the overwhelming amount of hard data available?

    August 20, 2012 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  13. 2tired2care

    I hope he stays in and makes it an easy win for the Dems.

    August 20, 2012 08:49 pm at 8:49 pm |
  14. belinda

    No. We think he should be allowed to stay. He is the Poster Boy for The Tea Party, they should love him. Ryan his partner in Crimes against Women,Thinks dearly of him,Priebus does too. But , he would never admit it.Instead, look at his Legislation . He has always supported Ryan and Akin. Because that's what they support, all of them,it comes down to." A War on Women".Hypocrites and Lies.

    August 20, 2012 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  15. allenwoll

    We thank all these many warped GoPers who are working so hard to ensure Mr Obama's re-election ! ! !

    August 20, 2012 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  16. Pete

    Reince knows he just lost a seat and anyone taking his side will lose as well,he's radioactive and what's worse he won't retrack his extremist thinking.But that's just republicans and he's one that didn't think before signing his death warrent,only the teabaggers will throw him a bone because they recruited him,so its to their best interest not to drop him or other teaparty lapdogs will leave as well not feeling confident that they have these extremist partiers behind them politically as well as financially,the teaparty just may be over folks!!

    August 20, 2012 09:43 pm at 9:43 pm |
  17. Repubs are clowns

    own your idiots...don't run now!!

    August 20, 2012 09:46 pm at 9:46 pm |
  18. Indie54

    Just two weeks ago Rep Ryan was touting the fact that he is the most right-to-life person in DC politics!
    He Co-Authored bills to have Personhood declared on a fertilized eggs and a bill that would redefine what rape is.
    Rep Akin is the Rep Ryan of Missouri. Akin=Ryan, one and the same!
    But now Rep Ryan has developed the dreadful running-mate amnesia and a bad case of laliophobia.
    He doesn't remember stimulus letters, where the $ will go when they shut down Medicare, and he doesn't remember the fact he wrote a bill to make it illegal to have an abortion because the "person" will be killed.

    Remember Vote in Nov.
    Tricky Mitt-Show US Your Papers!

    August 20, 2012 09:50 pm at 9:50 pm |
  19. Randy Johnson

    No!!!!!!!!!!! – don't skip the election – make a complete fool out of the GOP – please!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 20, 2012 09:52 pm at 9:52 pm |
  20. Randy Johnson

    Well golly – don't seem to be any responses from this here story – har de har

    August 20, 2012 09:57 pm at 9:57 pm |
  21. TAes123

    Ah. So legitimate rape is forcible rape. Isn't this the language Akins and Paul Ryan crafted for a bill that would only allow abortions for cases of "forcible rape". Scarey.

    August 20, 2012 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  22. SafeJourney

    Yes, Akin sould drop out and anyone else that has worked on anti-women policies with him (Ryan)

    August 20, 2012 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  23. American People

    Why drop out and skip the convention? He has shown the true GOP mantra.

    August 20, 2012 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm |
  24. charles

    Aikins said what all republicans have been saying. As usual they are pretending not agree with him.

    August 20, 2012 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm |
  25. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    I don't think that he would be attending the convention any way because he has a hard fight with the incombent. This guy is going to lose and hard.

    August 20, 2012 10:14 pm at 10:14 pm |
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