Republican Senate Candidate Says “Legitimate Rape” is Form of Birth Control
Senate candidate and Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO) told a television station on Sunday that “legitimate” rape rarely results in pregnancy because “the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”
Akin didn’t, of course, cite any medical evidence for his claim, only going so far as to say he’d had discussion with doctors who shared his view. He later said he “misspoke”.
Akin’s position is that women who were victims of “legitimate” rape don’t require abortions because their bodies won’t allow them to become pregnant. Conversely, this means that women who become pregnant after rape must have been victims of “illegitimate” rape, meaning they weren’t raped at all. So whether or not a woman was actually raped depends on whether or not she becomes pregnant. If she becomes pregnant, then no rape occurred, at least not according to Akin.
But, as the Washington Post reports:
Research published in the Journal of American Obstetrics and Gynecology suggests over 30,000 pregnancies result from rape annually. “Rape-related pregnancy occurs with significant frequency,” the trio of researchers from the University of South Carolina concluded. “It is a cause of many unwanted pregnancies.”
Rep. Todd Akin is just wrong, but when have facts ever mattered to right wing fanantics.
After Akin’s comments, some Republicans suggested that he step aside and allow room for another candidate to take his place, but Missouri law favors the candidate who won the primary. So it appears that Missouri voters are stuck with him, which should bode well for Senate Democrat Claire McCaskill, who is set to face him in the fall.
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