GOP senators call on Akin to step aside
August 20th, 2012
11:03 AM ET
8 years ago

GOP senators call on Akin to step aside

(CNN) – Sen. Scott Brown, the Massachusetts Republican in a tight battle for re-election, said Monday that Rep. Todd Akin ought to step aside in his bid for U.S. Senate in Missouri after Akin claimed "legitimate rape" rarely results in pregnancy. Sen. Ron Johnson also called on Akin to resign from the GOP nomination.

"As a husband and father of two young women, I found Todd Akin's comments about women and rape outrageous, inappropriate and wrong," Brown wrote in a statement released by his campaign. "There is no place in our public discourse for this type of offensive thinking. Not only should he apologize, but I believe Rep. Akin's statement was so far out of bounds that he should resign the nomination for US Senate in Missouri."

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Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, who was elected in 2010, also called on Akin to step aside.

Akin won his spot on November's ballot earlier this August, and is slated to face Democratic incumbent Sen. Claire McCaskill in November.

Prior to this controversy, the top non-partisan political handicappers had rated the Missouri race a "toss up." Republicans consider McCaskill's seat a prime take-over target as they try to reclaim control of the Senate. Democrats currently have a 53 to 47 advantage in the chamber, but are defending 23 (21 Democrats and two independents who caucus with the party) of the 33 seats up for grabs in November.

Brown is facing Elizabeth Warren, a consumer advocate and former adviser to President Barack Obama, in a fierce battle for U.S. Senate in Massachusetts. Brown is a first-term Republican who won his seat in a January 2010 election to replace the late Sen. Ted Kennedy.

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Filed under: Abortion • Missouri • Scott Brown
soundoff (400 Responses)
  1. IndeePendant

    Scott Brown is bolder than Romney, who has fallen short by not calling for Akin's withdrawal from the race..

    August 20, 2012 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  2. BK

    It's sort of true what some people are saying. There's a good chance that his resignation is only being called for because he just blew his chances of winning and they want to switch in someone that can.

    August 20, 2012 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  3. Debby

    Scott Brown is just saving his own hide he should lose.

    August 20, 2012 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  4. JG

    It's such a sad commentary when so many people go to such great lengths to defend something so horrific as abortion.

    The last time people so fervently advocated for mass murder. they were called Nazis. This is our new Holocaust.

    August 20, 2012 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  5. jaimie

    How did this nut bag ever get elected? And he represents? What is wrong with his decision making? He needs to retire now.

    August 20, 2012 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  6. The Real Tom Paine


    The "war on women" is a fictional concoction designed to scare people into an Obama vote. Even more outrageous than "Mediscare" tactics.

    If Obama is so wonderful, why can't you rely on his record and accomplishments to garner votes? Could it be because there is none? Hmmm....
    Fictional concoction? Like the fiction that Romney is a business genius? That he was a great governor? Its interesting that you don't mention anything about Akin's disgraceful comments, or the fact that Ryan has a simliar voting record when it comes to Women's issues. Could it be you are deflecting? Besides, this is about Scott Brown trying to appeal ( gasp) to moderates. Are you ready to call out the GOP Curia to question him?

    August 20, 2012 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  7. Republican Class Warfare

    This is the GOP position: no abortion, period. Why should Akin step aside for stating what Republicans believe? He thinks that if a woman is raped, the misery of the situation must be compounded so that everyone involved is punished. The rapist is to be punished by going to work for nickels in a private prison where he is also very likely to be raped or killed. The woman is punished by having to carry the child of the rapist for 9 months and then proceed to raise it, causing unplanned and undue financial hardship for decades, and the child is punished by living as a constant reminder to its own mother that she was the victim of a crime (and the child is a product of that crime) that changed her life unimaginably. This is actually the GOP position: you get raped and don't want to raise your rapist's kid? Well then you're a murderer and will burn forever for what that man decided to do to you. Absolutely disgusting. Paul Ryan holds the same position.

    August 20, 2012 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  8. MrAnonymous

    JG: The chances of getting pregnant from a rape are identical to the chances of getting pregnant from unprotected sexual intercourse. It depends a great deal on the ovulation cycle of the woman. Any couple that has tried to get pregnant understands this. A woman's body cannot "shut that whole thing down." What Akin said is completely inaccurate. There is no truth to what he said.

    August 20, 2012 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  9. Janet

    There is apparently a resurgence of longing for the Ideals and superstitions of ancient and uneducated religious ferver around the globe. This kind of deeply ignorant thinking is worthy of the 12th century middle east abuse, murder and oppression of women. To find it in people who are running for office in this country is reprehensible. The religious right runs on "faith only", Facts are irrelevant and certainly only get in the way of what they choose to "believe". Keep these pudding brains out of our government, they are dangerous to themselves and others.

    August 20, 2012 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  10. Repubs are clowns

    so, ryan and the republicans are "outraged" by this aiken clown (give me a break) and they will want credit for this false outrage...since when did doing the right thing become virtue...these fools are so far right that saying the President of the USA is a decent man is now somehow considered a badge of honor...CLOWNS!

    August 20, 2012 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  11. Nietodarwin

    Ryan also cosponsored the "No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act" with Akin in 2011. The GOP tried to narrow the definition of rape as it related to abortions with the measure. Only in instances of "forcible rape," the bill specified, would a woman be eligible to have her abortion covered under insurance. THIS IS IN 2011!!!! If Ryan tries to back away from Akin now he's a flip flopper like his mate. Scott Brown will lose also, no matter how much he tries to save his skin by calling for Akin to resign. I live in CO, and my neighbor sends $50/mo. to Scott Brown's opponent, Ms. Warren.

    August 20, 2012 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  12. fenson76

    I can be bold in an election year too, Real hero. lol

    August 20, 2012 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  13. lilycatgirl

    Mr. Akin is already a Representative in Congress. Shall we have this idiot serve out his term, Mr Brown?

    August 20, 2012 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  14. Tom from Canonsburg

    I will be surprised if Brown isn't asked to resign for speaking out against a member of the GOP.

    August 20, 2012 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  15. eli

    He will step aside only because of his chances of winning is over and also it could hurt the Republican party on the national level with women. They agree with his statement but will force him to resign for the overall good of the party.

    August 20, 2012 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  16. JG

    We're not talking about Romney, Bain or any of that. And I hardly disagree that Brown is pandering. What I am saying is that this so-called "war on women" is a fiction cooked up in the bowels of the DNC's hit squad batallion.

    The polemics and hyperbole are disgusting. It's war on women to say you believe in the value of life in the womb? You can certainly disagree, and I respect your opinion if you do, but don't make this out to be something it isn't. I could say Obama is waging a "war against taxpayers" and back it up. But Republicans don't need to resort to those tactics. Obama's miserable record speaks for itself.

    August 20, 2012 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  17. Lookout4

    Politicians need to be smarter. Akin's comment is akin to nothing that even sounds smart. Its like he threw mud on himself.

    August 20, 2012 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  18. Kris

    I agree with Senator Brown. The Senate may be up for grabs and the Senate seat he is running for may be the deciding one. If he loses and Harry Reid remains Majority Leader by a single seat he can legitimately be blamed for every ridiculous decision coming from the Senate for at least 2 years.

    August 20, 2012 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  19. B.

    Scott Brown should step aside with him as they both are cut from the same cloth.

    August 20, 2012 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  20. John 3:16

    This just re-confirms the fact that the Republican party is being taken over by extremists with very unusual perceptions on critical issues of the present.

    August 20, 2012 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  21. Paladin Knight

    If every Congressman or President stepped down for saying something stupid, we wouldn't have any elected officials left in Washington D.C.!!!

    August 20, 2012 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  22. tacostand

    I could have voted for Scott Brown as the Republican nominee for president...

    August 20, 2012 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  23. cWhatsNew

    Please just resign and disappear. It's such a shame to all Americans. Other countries are thinking we are such a rouge country to even have this kind of person in US Senate.

    August 20, 2012 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  24. R

    Republican women must be completely brain dead. These jokers want to go back to the day when women don't vote, don't speak out of turn, do as they are told and KNOW THEIR PLACE.

    August 20, 2012 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  25. TRex

    'Legitimate rape' is an unfortunate turn of phrase, isn't it? I'm sure the Senator meant 'actual rape' or just 'rape'. He might be referring to the statistic indicating something like 5% of rapes lead to pregnancy - but is of course mistaken about the biology and his conclusions. However, the whole argument was supposed to be about the legitimacy of abortion in cases of rape. If he believes in the sanctity of all human life, beginning at conception, then his opposition to all abortions follows that simpler logic. And then if merely money or inconvenience were the only complications of pregnancy it might be a winning position to take. Sometimes tragic health consequences (sometimes even including death of the mother) would have to give one pause. But, I think the first principle is sovereignty over your own body - protect and preserve that, and protect life. Rape or incest violate that sovereignty, and so does being forced to carry a pregnancy through to term against your will. The key is the definition of "life", as in "life begins at "_________". Find that answer, and then strike a reasonable balance...

    August 20, 2012 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
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