Senate candidate Mourdock offends with rape comment
The Kansas City Star
Another GOP Senate candidate is in hot water for an offensive comment about rape.
Indiana hopeful Richard Mourdock didn’t defy medical science the way Missouri candidate Todd Akin did with his “legitimate rape” remark. But Mourdock showed he is willing to impose his personal religious beliefs on rape victims.
At a debate Tuesday night, the tea party-backed candidate answered a question on whether abortion should be permitted in cases of rape or incest this way:
“I struggled with it myself for a long time, but I came to realize that life is that gift from God. And, I think, even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen.”
There are plenty of women out there who are pretty sure that God did not intend them to get pregnant from a rape, and who want the choice of terminating that pregnancy.
That the question of permitting abortion following rape has even become an issue in Senate races shows the power of interest-group politics.
Anti-abortion groups have found numerous ways to restrict abortions over the years. They’ve convinced states to require parental consent for minors, to impose burdensome regulations on clinics and to require intrusive procedures before women are able to obtain an abortion. But it’s never enough, and now we’re witnessing the ultimate invasion of privacy – men like Akin and Mourdock grasping for reasons to prevent women from terminating pregnancies resulting from rape.
Mourdock’s remarks are awkward, to say the least, for Mitt Romney, who is appearing in ads in Indiana endorsing Mourdock. Romney has said he disagrees with Mourdock’s remarks but hasn’t yet asked Mourdock to pull the ads.
The problem for Romney is that his running mate, Paul Ryan, is on record supporting legislation that would ban all abortion, even in cases of rape and incest. And, as candidates are finding out, it’s very hard to articulate a rationale to justify that position.