Leading social conservatives rally to Akin's defense
August 20th, 2012
02:22 PM ET
10 years ago

Leading social conservatives rally to Akin's defense

Tampa, Florida (CNN) - While much of the Republican universe spent Monday condemning Missouri Senate hopeful Todd Akin for his comments about "legitimate rape" and abortion, one of the nation's most prominent conservative organizations rallied to his defense.

Two top officials from the Family Research Council said the Missouri congressman is the target of a Democratic smear campaign and chided those Republicans who have condemned Akin.

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Connie Mackey, who heads the group's political action committee, said the group "strongly supports" Todd Akin.

"We feel this is a case of gotcha politics," Mackey told reporters in Tampa, where the Republican National Committee was gathering ahead of the party's convention next week. "He has been elected five times in that community in Missouri. They know who Todd Akin is. We know who Todd Akin is. We've worked with him up on the hill. He's a defender of life."

"Todd Akin is getting a really bad break here," she added. "I don't know anything about the science or the legal implications of his statement. I do know politics, and I know gotcha politics when I see it."

Family Research Council president Tony Perkins fired back at Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown, a leading moderate voice in the GOP who called Akin's remarks "outrageous" and encouraged him to drop his challenge to Democrat Claire McCaskill.

"He should be careful because based on some of his statements there may be some call for him to get out of his race," Perkins said of Brown. "He has been off the reservation on a number of Republican issues, conservative issues I should say. His support among conservatives is very shallow."

Mackey said that Republicans calling on Akin to apologize or drop out should get "backbone."

Perkins and Mackey, though, pulled their punches when asked about Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who has also denounced Akin.

"The Romney campaign as well as now Paul Ryan have made very clear where they stand in the issue of life," Perkins said. "We are not going to allow people to divide conservative voters in this process. We are going to keep our eye on the big picture."

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Filed under: Abortion • Tony Perkins
soundoff (114 Responses)
  1. steven harnack

    I guess that he must think that what Akins said is true ,due to all of the "research" that they do, eh? Family "research" Council my aunt's fanny!

    August 20, 2012 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  2. Q

    If the "conservative" model is so effective, how come there are no advanced countries using this obvious model. There are a few free market countries, Hati, Somalia, ect. but no one wants to talk about them...

    August 20, 2012 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  3. Frankie

    I bet Romney does not have the leadership to ask this guy to step down from his candidacy.

    August 20, 2012 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  4. Max

    Typical Republican view

    This is a typical Republican view...the rape victims MUST be punished,,,not the rapist. What's really new?

    August 20, 2012 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  5. Glenn Rice

    What Akin said, he, Perkins, and MANY republicans believe. Why should he step down from the race? Let the voters decide whether this thinking is what they want in office.

    August 20, 2012 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  6. amcphaull

    Todd Akin promises new law if elected. The law will provide a tax credit for impregnated victims of rape who successfully terminate their pregnancy using Jedi mind tricks vs a traditional Dr. This will become the new working model turning woman into independent contractors, working for themselves and becoming empowered vs giving their money to PlannedParenthood. Thanks GOP.

    August 20, 2012 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  7. Realfreeenterpriser

    Tony Perkins, in referring to Scott Brown, said "He has been off the reservation on a number of Republican issues". Gee, only a Republican could offend women AND Natives all at the same time.

    August 20, 2012 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  8. Tam

    It came right out of his mouth - was taped - no one "misspoke" for him. What is misspeak anyway?

    August 20, 2012 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  9. Doyle Wiley, MI

    Forget politics, Akin's made an extremely insulting and undignified statement, personally and intellectually, he doesn't belongs in office

    August 20, 2012 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  10. Wade

    The really proud thing for Republicans is that so many have stepped up and criticized him yet Obama DEFENDS Biden. Biden's words were ten times worse.

    August 20, 2012 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  11. Jack FIds

    "Governor Romney and Congressman Ryan disagree with Mr. Akin's statement, and a Romney-Ryan administration would not oppose abortion in instances of rape," Romney campaign spokeswoman Amanda Henneberg wrote.

    And Romney himself, in an interview with the National Review Online, said that Akin's "comments on rape are insulting, inexcusable, and, frankly, wrong."

    Looks to me like the FAMILY RESEARCH COUNCIL is trying it's BEST to become IRRELEVANT faster than the IDIOT AKINS.... they will be doing an Etch-A-Sketch procedure before the weekend arrives.....
    I cannot wait until Karl Rove is THE LAST CONSERVATIVE STANDING & all of the rest of conservative America is UNDER THE BUS TOO !

    August 20, 2012 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  12. TomInRochNY

    Misspeak means he said what he REALLY means, but now realizes it will cost him politically. So he's back pedalling now.

    August 20, 2012 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  13. Faith-Isn't-a-Preacher

    True or Not (Not True).
    It's something that cannot be proven to the masses.
    It's political suicide.
    Akin must step aside or we must support a Tea Party Independent.

    August 20, 2012 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  14. cptpooppants

    "I don't know anything about the science or the legal implications of his statement." Yes, we know that you know NOTHING about science and real facts. That is painfully obvious.

    August 20, 2012 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  15. Drew

    Being ignorant and displaying that ignorance is not "got'cha politics" this bumbkin should not be allowed anywhere near a government office but then again the "good" people of his state elected him, go figure.

    August 20, 2012 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  16. mike

    Wow what has the Republican / Tea Party got themselfs into a no win situation thats for sure . And I thought the Tea
    Party was made up of Bullies,Bigots, and Birthers and now we can add Bozos to the list.

    August 20, 2012 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  17. Indie in VA

    "I don't know anything [about anything related to the facts of the situation] but I know gotcha politics when I see them!" Oh, goodness gracious, lady.

    August 20, 2012 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  18. rjw

    And Tony Perkins wonders why the SPLC classifies his organization as a "hate group." Defending this moron Akin is enough to classify the FRC as a "hate group." Shame on the FRC. Haters.

    August 20, 2012 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  19. Richard

    So his statement of "legimate rape" is something they believe in. We've known for many years they are against women's rights. It is all coming out now, they can no longer hold their feelings. They are for the rich at any cost and for fetuses at any cost. Just wait until that fetus is born and they will abandon it!

    August 20, 2012 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  20. Marie MD

    This mack says that it's gotcha politics? Can she explain why? I hope she never has to find out what it is to bs raped!!!
    She knows nothinf about nothing. What a disgrace to the human race. I hope Floridians ade paying attention to her too.
    This akin really believes that if a woman is "legitimately raped" that her body shuts down and she can't get pregnant?
    From where are these morons coming from? Is istthe same as putting an aspirin between your legs? No, actually its worse but this is the mentality of these right wing zealots!!! The perkins no brain matter guy is another that needs to get a life Nd leave women and others alone. If the peoplemin akin's district didn't know him before theybsure as heck know him now!!!

    August 20, 2012 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  21. zzzzz

    It is time for Scott Brown to change parties and become another blue dog Democrat .
    The guy got lucky, thanks to a badly run campain by Dems, and given the choice he'll be a Democrat with the ability to choose his opinion, instead of follow "GOP and FoxNews" line.

    August 20, 2012 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  22. kellieB

    Akin is an idiot,
    He belongs in the Senate.
    Every time one of our "leaders" issues such a stupid utterance ( and they do that often) they just add another nail to their coffin and more reason to vote them all out.

    August 20, 2012 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  23. Rudy NYC

    "Todd Akin is getting a really bad break here," she added.
    So. He blew up his career all by himself. He made his own bed. He said a "really bad" thing. It's too bad that he has that conservative arrogance streak, and so he thinks that he can move past it and forget about it. Not this time.

    August 20, 2012 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  24. zzzzz

    "a case of gotcha politics", as was "YOU DID NOT BUILD THAT!" taken out of content.

    August 20, 2012 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  25. bb

    Wheres Oblunders newsweek story?????

    August 20, 2012 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
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