(I'm) very concerned, and I know many other conservatives are as well because they have all written me today, that if you stay in this race, and this becomes the defining issue of the race, and there is a timeline now in play here, that this could then put the entire state of Missouri, this Senate seat, and even the top of the ticket, in jeopardy in Missouri.
. . . I think it could be harmful to the whole party, to the whole state, to the whole idea of capturing the Senate, to the whole idea of Mitt Romney doing well in a state he has to win.
~ Sean Hannity of Fox News, quoted by Media Matters
(Akin) should understand that his words with regards to rape are words that I can’t defend, that we can’t defend, and we can’t defend him.
~ Presidential Candidate, Mitt Romney, quoted by Roll Call
I recognize this is a difficult time for him, but over the next 24 hours, Congressman Akin should carefully consider what is best for him, his family, the Republican party, and the values that he cares about and has fought for throughout his career in public service.”
~ John Cornyn, Chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee
Congressman Akin’s comments were totally inexcusable. What he said is just flat wrong in addition to being wildly offensive to any victim of sexual abuse. Although Rep. Akin has apologized, I believe he should take time with his family to consider whether this statement will prevent him from effectively representing our party in this critical election.
~ Mitch McConnell, Senate Minority Leader via Politico
I think for Washington party insiders to come in and try to invalidate the votes of Missourians would be radical. I think that would be a very radical thing to have happen, and I can't imagine how the Republican primary voters would think about that in Missouri.
I think there would be a significant backlash. I'm not sure that would have a good ending for the Republican Party.
~ Akin's Democratic opponent, Claire McCaskill, on tossing Akin out of the race
(Akin made a) moronic series of statements . . . he's damaged goods. He's done. He's a dead man walking as a candidate.
. . . I believe that McCaskill has got to go. She's an embarrassment and now she's trying to change all her stands and run to the president -- run from the president. If you want her out of there, and I do, what you got to say is to Todd Akin, thanks so much, you're a sincere guy but clearly you're not ready and you should ask him to step out.
~ Brian Kilmeade on Fox News Radio
Well, certainly, you know first of all, if it was me and -- I wouldn't say anything that dumb as he has. But if it was me and I had an opportunity to let someone else run to actually give ourselves a better chance of winning, I would step aside. And so, listen, what he said, Erin, was biologically stupid. It's something that nobody on either side of the aisle agrees with. It's a bizarre statement and it's something that I think he needs to seriously think about. And like I said, if it was me, I would step aside and let someone else run for that office.
. . . The fact of the matter is most women are pro life. This election is not coming down to this particular Todd Akin issue. We're very proud to be a pro life party and we are and I'm pro life. And I think it's a winning issue. But the problem with Todd Akin is that he's taken it to a level that no one in the mainstream is in agreement with. And you're seeing both parties say that.
, , , I will tell you, I would prefer that Todd Akin do the right thing for our party and our candidates and I would prefer him not come (to the Tampa Convention).
~ Reince Priebus, Republican National Chairman, to Erin Burnett on CNN
Congressman Akin can demonstrate he accepts full responsibility by removing himself from the Missouri Senate race. . . . On a practical level, these comments will follow the Congressman throughout the entire campaign and not allow him to deal with the critical issues facing America and the failed record of President Obama.
~ Reverend Patrick J. Mahoney of the Christian Defense Coalition
Nobody paid any attention last week when John Boehner mentioned the so-called "knuckle-draggers" in his own party: the hard-right wild men who believe the President is a secret Muslim invader, that women who have an abortion or even use an IUD should be treated as murderers. Now comes this Republican candidate in Missouri - Todd Akin - talking about "legitimate rape" and spouting some cave man theory that sex which is forced cannot result in pregnancy. Finally we meet the missing link, the evidence that the Part of Lincoln cannot get in bed with the most freakish elements of the right, the birthers, and the personhood nuts, and all the rest of this menagerie, and not become itself, a freak show.
. . . As the great Michael Kinsley put it: "In politics a gaffe is when you say what you really think." This is what you hear when you have a Cro-Magnon say what he really thinks.
~ Chris Matthews on Hardball
Akin has backed off from his remarks, albeit with the politician’s excuse of “misspeaking.” People who make such remarks on television are typically capable of making more like them, or rather incapable of exercising the judgment to refrain. We suspect that this same lack of judgment will cause Akin to blow past tomorrow evening’s deadline for him to leave the race and allow the Republicans to select a better nominee. We hope the congressman, who surely wants to see a Senate with as much conservative strength as possible next year, will prove us wrong.
~ The National Review
GOP: "It's up to Todd Akin to decide whether to withdraw from the Missouri Senate race, because we've got plenty more where he came from."— Top Conservative Cat (@TeaPartyCat) August 21, 2012
Clock ticking as GOP urges Akin to withdraw: Republican Senate candidate Todd Akin, under fire for his controversial... dlvr.it/227Hkm— Buzz in Baltimore (@buzzinbaltimore) August 21, 2012
“I, Rep. Todd Akin, am a bigoted jackass who probably should not be alive, let alone in political office.” theonion.com/articles/i-mis…— Ryan Nielsen (@ryannielsen) August 21, 2012
Washington state Republicans join chorus calling for Rep. Todd Akin to drop out - The Seattle Times (blog) bit.ly/PBkPwE— Washington new (@Washingtonnew) August 21, 2012
The Tea Party Express, the nation’s largest tea party super PAC, is urging Todd Akin to drop out of the MO Senate racebit.ly/OShgUE— TheRittenbergReport (@TheRReport) August 20, 2012