Add U.S. Senate candidate Heather Wilson to the list of Republicans calling for Rep. Todd Akin to abandon his U.S. Senate bid in the aftermath of his inflammatory comments about rape.
Akin, a Missouri Republican who is challenging Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill in the Missouri Senate race, created a firestorm of controversy while defending his opposition to abortion — even in the case of pregnancy resulting from rape.
“It seems to me first of all, from what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare,” Akin said. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”
Akin has since apologized and said he misspoke, acknowledging that pregnancy can, in fact, result from rape. But that hasn’t stopped people of all political persuasions from denouncing his comments with some – including Wilson – demanding his resignation.
“As a woman and a mother, I found Rep. Akin’s comments this weekend to be sickening and deeply offensive,” Wilson said in a statement. “There is no such thing as ‘legitimate rape.’ His remarks undermine his ability to command the respect necessary for leadership and he should step aside.”
The Wilson campaign told the Journal today she opposes abortion except in cases of rape, incest or when the life of the mother would be jeopardized by the pregnancy.
Rep. Martin Heinrich, a Democrat challenging Wilson for the U.S. Senate seat in New Mexico, also denounced Akin’s comments.
“Rep. Akin’s comments about rape are profoundly wrong and disgusting to every American. All rape is a violation and can never be ‘legitimate’,” Heinrich said. “New Mexicans should be able to make their own choices about family planning. I trust that women, not politicians, will make the best medical decisions for themselves and their families.”