Tuesday, August 21, 2012

MO GOP: What Price Principles? Just one gaffe... and we'll give your change back!

Congressmen Todd Akin, who just won the Republican primary for Senate from Missouri, is going to make an announcement this morning, regarding whether he's going to remain in the senate race... or withdraw.

Why? Because of a comment. Actually because of a portion of a comment. A Gaffe. Who is calling for him to do this? The 3rd place rival he defeated in the primary, and nearly every GOP operative and functionary in Missouri, campaign contributors in and out of state, as well as various and sundry Republican Senators, nationwide. Even former Cosmopolitan centerfold guy, Sen. Scott Brown from MA, has put his two cents in on the propriety of Akin's remaining in office.

What was this comment?

He wondered, stumbling for a few words in the midst of a reply about abortion in cases of rape, he said
"Well you know, people always want to make that as one of those things, how do ya, how do you slice that particularly tough sort of ethical question, it seems to me... well first of all, from what I understand from doctors, that's really where... if it's a legitimate rape, uh, the female body has ways to shut that whole thing down. But let's assume, maybe that didn't work or something, I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be on the rapist and not on attacking the child."
Was it a WTF?! moment? Yes it was.

Was it a stupid thing to say? Yup. Did he apologize for it? Yes indeedy he did. He issued a statement with all the popular PC proper words about empathy & such, and that he was sorry, which personally I think was a bit of a pander to the godz of political correctness - always an error - if I wrote his press release, I'd have said something like:

But foolish as his comment was, did he say anything that revealed any nefarious dealings or hidden agenda? No. Did he say anything that suggested that he didn't believe the conservative positions and principles he campaigned upon to win the nomination for Republican Senator from the state of Missouri? No. Did he make the statement as part of a well considered position paper? Nope. He made the verbal blunder, in trying to stitch together two statements regarding abortion and allowing the fact that rape was an awful crime and  someone should be punished for it, preferably the rapist.

This doesn't go against the positions he ran on, or against his public or private feelings on the matter, he's held this view, campaigned on this view, and was elected over his rivals for the nomination because of, or in spite of, this view.

Yet political players far and wide now wish to overturn the legitimate winner of a primary election; party players and powers that be, wish to disenfranchise all republican voters of Missouri, in order for these power players to put who they would like to see him replaced with. These are the same people who didn't want Akin to run for the Senate, the same people who didn't support him during the election, the same people who did their best to undermine him in order to get a less conservative candidate to run... face it: Democrat Senator Claire McCaskill was more interested in a Conservative winning the Missouri Senate primary, than the MO GOP was! And yet, after the people of Missouri, who knowingly voted for the more conservative candidate - are very likely going to have their votes overturned, by party players who didn't approve of their votes to begin with.

On the pretext of a politically sensitive gaffe, the candidate nominated in a statewide election, is potentially going to be removed from the race, and replaced by someone the GOP would have preferred to have been (s)elected in the first place.

So convenient and such a nice precedent... what could possibly go wrong with that?

Realize, he broke no law, revealed no lie, exposed no subterfuge. He was not accused of rape by former associates or fans (Juanita Broaddrick, Paula Jones, Kathleen Wiley, etc), he didn't lie about having sexual relations with an intern in the oval office, he didn't leave a woman to die in his car submerged in a pond, he didn't tweet photos of his privates to random women across the Twittersphere, he didn't molest a young boy... he didn't even call anyone a bad name.

He said something stupid, recognized it and immediately apologized for it.

And for that... he is being hounded to withdraw his name from the race.

A statewide vote is being nullified, not because of outrage and widespread demands from the people, but to soothe the sensibilities of party apparatchiks and to enable them to override an election they didn't approve of, and to avoid possible embarrassment to Mitt Romney's campaign & the Republican National Convention. And just maybe perhaps because members of the GOP, would very much like to kneel and prostrate themselves at the feet of the media lords of political correctness, and fervently declare to them, while kissing their ring, that they will never let it be said that they hold the will of the people or their own principles and convictions, to be of equal or greater value than a single tenet of political correctness or the current winds of popular opinion.

Whether or not Todd Akin withdraws, I'd just like to say to the MO GOP - you disgust me. You are an abomination and an affront to the Republic.

Have a nice day.


Rebecca Pickens said...

From your take on the situation you don't get how incredibly offensive Akin's remarks were. His remarks show a view of women and rape that has made it incredibly difficult to get justice for women who have been raped. It is as if he said, well if she was REALLY raped she wouldn't be pregnant right now, so the rapist OBVIOUSLY did nothing wrong. You see the issue in this situation is NOT abortion. It is Akin's view of women and rape. It is indefensible and he SHOULD drop out of the race. If he stays in he will LOSE to CLAIRE and that would be so incredibly selfish of him. And guess who agrees with your positon on this one??? You got it CLAIRE does. HUH, I wonder why????? Because she will WIN!!!!

Anonymous said...

No, not because of a gaffe, he needs to be replaced because he is going to lose the election - because he said something profoundly dumb - and there is still time to replace him with someone who can win and help promote a republican agenda.

Jim Taylor said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
shadd2000 said...

I am prolife and a republican. What no one gets is how awful rape is. Our family went through that years ago. It is the worst of anything that can happen to a woman. It is the worst of anything that can happen to a family. Congressman Aiken crossed the line when he made the statements he did. This type of outrage is what turns so many young people away from their churches today. This type of right wing demonization is what turns so many women and young people away from the republican party. Please do the right thing and resign today.

Van Harvey said...

Rebecca, I understand what the meme is, I get the 'empathy' angle, I just don't buy it. No normal person lacks empathy for a victim of rape, especially a parent, and if Akin is anything, it's normal.

I don't buy the outrage, it is no more sincere than any other play for ginning up publc opinion.

I especially don't buy it from the left who elected and re-elected as president, someone accused of multiple instances of sexual abuse. They elected, re-elected and praised someone who left a woman to drown in his car and whose first thought was for his own political career, and who continued to think it great sport to play grab-ass & force himself upon women even in public eateries. And there is precious little outrage for the current democratic congressman who was just accused of molesting an adolescent boy. Good luck googlng it.

Akin has had his 100% opposition to abortion since day one, he stated it publicly, and campaigned on it, the people of Missouri elected him in spite of or because of that view.

The only real issue of substance here, is that a candidate has been elected by the residents of the state of missouri, and he is being forced out and replaced by party power-players who didn't want him elected in the first place.

Van Harvey said...

shadd2000, I don't buy it.

Van Harvey said...

Jim, from the comment you deleted, points 1 & 2... meh. But your last point,

"3) Our Senator should be more savy than to be trapped by a question from the media. This is not the first time this has happened. He should have learned from his previous encounters."

Yes, that I will agree on.

Several people I know and respect, are coming at this from the electability angle, the drying up of vital funds, and that is a perfectly valid concern.

The core issue for me is that an election has taken place, and that election is being overturned on the basis of a media frenzy that has been entirely whipped up by those who know how to whip it up.

The will of 'We The People' is being brushed aside under cover of a pretext.


freespeak said...

This blog post is RIGHT ON!
Bigotry, as well, shows its ugly face in the remarks of the political forces against him on this.
How's it going with the Biden comments, by the way????.
Akin was set up with a gotcha question.
And it's a subject that should not even be political!!!

freespeak said...

P.S. Who will vote for McCaskill over this? Anyone?
Or who wants the candidate they want, but who LOST, to be the next pick?
Are they more perfect?
Do we just go down the line?

Eleanore Warner said...

National GOP & MoGOP, including presidential nominee Mitt Romney are scared to death someone is going to ruin their chance to put a middle of the roader in the White House. They will not stand up for the platform they present at the national convention---they run as far to the left as they can, after an election. I am sick to death of their trying to remove someone who does stands up for true conservative values---not this nambee pambee title of 'conservative' that they all are tooting. ( they all picture themselves as a 'Reagan conservative' and they haven't the slightest notion what that means) Akin has the record of being a TRUE CONSERVATIVE with the liberal as well as the conservative groups who research the votes. Missourians should be outraged that the National Republicans and commentators are trying to dismiss our votes and put in someone they can control. They cannot control Todd Akin and that is what this is all about. Thanks Missourians for voting for Todd Akin for US Senate.

Eleanore Warner said...

Regarding the National Republican Senatorial Committe withdrawing their (supposed) $5 Million---it is obvious they are going to do the same thing they did in Nevada 2 years ago---they withheld funds from the candidate the people of Nevada elected--- so they could keep HARRY REID in there!!!! Aren't they real smart? This is exactly why we give our funds directly to the candidate themselves---we do our research of the candidates and do a better job picking people who represent our values----this NRSC is funding RINOs and others who THEY CAN CONTROL. They can keep their funds ----we have people of Mo. who are sick of Claire McCaskill and will work and vote again for Todd Akin.

freespeak said...

One more thing.
What is a Jaco?

Anonymous said...

What are we doing? Where is our ability to stand for the things we believe? I would rather loose to Claire than allow the so called leaders of the main stream Republican party continue to dictate the direction of this country.

Anonymous said...

Jaco is a big lib...had my run-in with him over disparaging comments about tea party members a while back. While I also find Akin's remarks foolish, its another example of "gotcha" media. Most politicians make a gaffe at one time or another. Some (Obama and Biden, especially Biden) make them repeatedly. I find it appalling that the entrenched Republican party establishment is so quick to throw a true conservative under the bus. They already lost my support when Boehner, McCain and others went after Michelle Bachman. They will certainly not get any more donations from me....I will contribute instead directly to those conservative candidates I support and not some Rino that they want in!

Van Harvey said...

From a reply I made on Facebook -
Believe me, I get the political and image angle, but Akin is a blatantly old-fashioned, traditional, folksy kind of guy, it's who he is, and always has been, and he was elected either because of, or in spite of it. Stupid as the comment was, it wasn't a "I was for it before I was against it" type of comment. While it may have been a Biden scale gaffe, I can't see giving it any more credence than that. It was a statement of ignorance, but not one of malice or cold-heartedness.

I listened to the surface and behind the scenes goings on all last night - the reactions from most people was a groan and a head slap and either 'What a stupid thing to say, he'd better clear that up quick' or/and 'How could such a long time politician make such a rookie worthy screwup?!', but the supposed 'outrage' has come only from insiders who didn't want him to begin with, or from those who never would have voted for him to begin with, and they are taking advantage of the issue to get their way, which the recent election denied them.

Rather than his craptastic press release, I'd have liked him to say something more along the lines of:

"I made a comment that if a woman was raped, her body could reject fertilization. I've since been told by doctors, family and friends... that not only was that not correct, but that it was an epically stupid thing to say, an idiotic falsehood without any factual basis, and I was a damn moron for ever thinking it, for which I am now embarrassed and deeply, deeply sorry.

I can't say where I ever got the notion, but I'm sorry I ever entertained it, let alone said it out loud. I made a factual error about biology, but make no mistake about my feelings towards rapists - they are vile creatures without excuse who should be, at the very least, locked away for life - and for the victims, I have only heartfelt sympathy for their having been brutally savaged and violated, and the fact that they bear less than no measure of responsibility for being attacked by such animals, I hope goes without saying.

I apoligize to the people of Missouri, and hope they will forgive me."

But... here we are.

Van Harvey said...

Huh. Looks like Akin pre-read my mind... somewhat. From Gateway Pundit:

"“Rape is an evil act. I used the wrong words in the wrong way and for that I apologize,” Akin tells viewers in the ad, first reported by Politico Tuesday morning. “As the father of two daughters, I want tough justice for predators. I have a compassionate heart for the victims of sexual assault. I pray for them,” Akin says.

“The fact is, rape can lead to pregnancy. The truth is, rape has many victims,” he continues.

“The mistake I made was in the words I said, not in the heart I hold. I ask for your forgiveness.”

WrongOnRed said...

Van, Akin should have hired you. While this whole episode has shown many things, I think the most important of which is that Missouri needs to go with the Closed Primary. The only reason Akin won from being down -5, was the "sucker vote" (those who fell for McCaskill's almost $2 million of Pro-Akin advertising and the Dems that pulled Rep ballots to vote for Akin at the insistence of the Democratic Party. I think this effort was more significant than anyone really realizes. This has also shown that Akin's Team sucks. I wish I could put is more kindly, but they do. You have terrible damage control, coupled with those supporters that are twisting themselves in knots to try and actually validate that comments he made, which he already repudiated. It is like a trainwreck of political novices, who should not be novices, all running around banging into one another. The problem now is that if Akin does not remove himself, 6 more years of Claire are virtually assured, as well as a Democratically controlled Senate, not to mention the drag he will be in state races. It is not so much about him or the good of the "Party", but rather for the good of the Nation.

As for Akin personally, I agree with your comments completely, however, while I have learned not to expect much intelligence from our elected officials, thinking that conception can be stopped by the body as a result of rape is monumentally stupid. Like flat Earth Society stupid.

It is like the old question of whether or not, if you go into the Doctor with a shotgun wound to the foot, if the Doctor can tell whether or not it was self-inflicted. In this case, Akin should be taking his cues from you, and gracefully step aside and let Brunner assume the position, that is if the Blunt controlled MoGOP do not throw Talent or some other failed candidate on the ballot. The stakes are too high for Akin's pride to get in the way. If Akin wanted a pass for such gaffes, he should have run as a Democrat, they get away with them all of the time.

mushroom said...

I have been waiting for your take on this, Van, and I appreciate it.

I hate to be on the same side as Steelman who has shown herself to be a pure political opportunist and probably no better than McCaskill.

Akin was not, though, set up. That was my wife's initial response. Akin made an outrageously boneheaded and completely unnecessary statement all on his own.

I do not want to give McCaskill six more years for the sake of Todd Akin's pride.

freespeak said...

Does the GOP now get to pick ANYONE if Akin leaves, or is there another vote, or does the person with the next highest votes (best) get the spot?

Anonymous said...

So far, he's stayin'


Van Harvey said...

Mushroom said "Akin was not, though, set up."

Oh no. No way. He wasn't set up. He F'd up. BIG GODDAMN TIME. He F'd up.

He tried to fly by the seat of his pants in an election with Claire McCaskill, and went on a notoriously leftist show, ad lib'd and F'D UP.

I hope no one is thinking that I am defending Todd Akin. I'm spitting mad at Todd Akin.

But we had an election. In a representative republic, even during the electoral process, that means that we, We The People, elected him to represent us. Barring an ethical infraction, No single person or committee gets to overturn that vote because they've got the vapors.

Personally, I think he can overcome his flub. Probably fairly easily. But that's not the point.

He won an election, and now he, more than anyone else, needs to respect that and do what he thinks is best - that is what representation is all about.

He F'd up. HE has a decision to make, whether to stay in, or get out, and he'd better not only make up his mind, but if in, he'd better get his G'Damn act straight.

He'd better get it F'ing Right.

8/21/2012 2:39 PM

freespeak said...

Did you see the link Anonymous just left?

Van Harvey said...

PatriotSoul, yes I saw it... and seriously, it angered me.

"“I realize that there are now a lot of other bravehearts that don’t fit into the political parties exactly,” he said. “I believe there is a cause here, and there is a part of the message that’s missing, and a lot of the people feel left out of the parties."

Damn RIGHT there are some Bravehearts that have been hard doing things they never had any damn desire to do. And like Wallace says to Robert the Bruce "Will you just FIGHT!"

Akin saying:

“What we’re seeing right now is a tremendous outpouring of support from just regular small people,” he said. “They’re not the big party people.”


freespeak said...

Well hell, yeah!

lslater2 said...

If Todd wants to stay in the fight I say we need to stand with him. This is not just a fight to beat Claire it is a fight for our freedom. I am tired of being told what to think by the so called Republican establishment. They do not have our best interest at heart they just want to protect their own butts and they want us to go away.

Anonymous said...

I'm SOOO divided on this; 1-don't like the 'caving in' to yapping dogs ... who will take this success to manufacture outrage in the future; 2-don't like the D.C. insiders & national party spokesman daring to dictate who WE--in Missouri--should have to represent us...quickly weighing in on a local matter (Do Dems EVER do this to their own?);3-But I don't figure Akin can win a close race wounded/on the defensive, 4-lacking party funds and 5-being the NATIONAL poster boy for everything bad about conservatism. 5-the damage to the national ticket could be horrendous. I just don't see how he can mount a legitimate campaign. Yet, he'd still have his Congressional job if he stepped down...which would allow time to put this past him.

Anonymous said...

I'm not even going into Akin's statement because I think that the battle brought on by the "old guard" Republicans is the bigger issue.

As a Tea Party supporter (even though I would have rather worked toward creating a strong third party) the thinking came to be that we had to work within the Republican Party to achieve our goal of electing conservatives. Look back at the 2010 elections and even now - we've had to not only win the general elections - battle the liberals - we've had to fight the Republicans in the primaries. When a conservative candidate was put up against the establishment's choice - support came in from all over the country. I did phone banks for candidates in other states and sent in my small donations. Conservatives did that all over the country and we've seen the results. (Recently - Ted Cruz in Texas.)

I voted for Akin because I agreed with his stance on MANY issues and I will continue to support him - in spite of this ONE issue. There is nothing that would make me smile more than to not only defeat Claire - but to do it WITHOUT the support of Wagner, Blount, Steelman, Emmerson, etc. Remember, the only ad that Claire ran against Akin prior to the primary - said that he was too conservative. So, I guess this would be the only issue that she could harp on prior to Nov. He can run on his record - put it up against hers and let voters decide. Voters in Missouri have not forgotten how she refused to listen to our voices on every Obama issue brought forth and they are not falling for the "moderate" illusion that she is trying to sell. The more dirt (GOP manipulation) that comes to the surface on this - the more voters will side with Akin.