Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Can it be? A Politician With Principles?

Back in August, Rep. Todd Akin, who is running for senator in Missouri, was pounded by the media and the Republican elites after he made a comment that pregnancy rarely results from "legitimate rape." It was, to say the least, a poor choice of words and he apologized for it.  His comment was made in the context of saying that abortion should not be the answer in pregnancies resulting from rape. 

GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney immediately denounced Akin and said he, Romney, absolutely does support abortion in cases of pregnancies resulting from rape (which, I might add, is in direct opposition to the GOP platform).  Romney called for Akin to immediately resign from his senatorial race.  We also had all the Republican talking heads such as Ann Coulter and Rush Limbaugh calling for Akin to give up his senate race not just for the good of the Republican party but for the good of the entire nation.   Limbaugh said, "Akin's Remark was Stupid and Untrue -- Now He Must Put the Nation's Future First."  Coulter wrote a column entitled, "If Akin Loves His Country, He Will Step Aside." 

There is a large portion of the
GOP elite who still have it in for Akin
The supposedly pro-life GOP did everything it could to kick out its most pro-life candidate.  Their message was winning is everything, dead babies be damned.  Sen. Mitch McConnell, GOP Senate minority leader said, "Although Representative 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."  Sen. John Cornyn, head of the Senate GOP campaign arm, cut off GOP money to Akin's campaign and said, "Congressman Akin's statements were wrong, offensive, and indefensible."  Rep. Paul Ryan, GOP Presidential candidate who also co-sponsored a pro-life bill with Rep. Akin, actually called Akin and told him he should leave the senate race.  And of course, there is the infamous comment by Karl Rove, who "joked" about murdering Akin.  He told a bunch of GOP fundraisers, " “We should sink Todd Akin. If he’s found mysteriously murdered, don’t look for my whereabouts!”

Well, Todd Akin, to his credit, stood strong in the face of this storm and did not leave the race.  He had until Sept. 25 to take his name off the ballot, and despite pressure from every side, he didn't do it.  After taking a hit in the polls, his numbers are now impressively rising.  As a result, some of the GOP are changing their minds and starting to support Akin. 

Below is a wonderful opinion piece by Jill Stanek as reprinted on Lifesite News.  Like Ms. Stanek, I believe that, along with the presidential contest, this is the most fascinating political race this year, and I find it much more important, at least symbolically, than the presidential race.  In my opinion, our choice in the presidential race is worse and worser.  It won't be great if Romney wins, but it will be a total disaster if Obama gets back in. 

But the Akin race, IMHO, is of real significance because it involves a truly pro-life politician who is willing to fight for his principles, even against his own party.  In fact, it involves the rarest creature of all God's creations - a politician who actually has principles!  Akin even went to jail once for his pro-life activities, as reported in the Huffington Post:
Yesterday I spoke to a group of people who had been in jail with me, you know don’t tell anybody I’m a jail bird, you know, but there were a bunch of us that were years ago involved in the pro-life movement and the question becomes: the Bible says, ‘rescue the innocent that is being led to slaughter,’ so a bunch of us sat in front of these doors and the police gave us a ride to the free hotel for a while, and you know how it goes, and the question is, is that biblical or not?
I am very reluctant to trust any politician, but I think I am willing to take a chance on Todd Akin.

Here is Jill Stanek's opinion piece:
Big name conservatives rally for Todd Akin; GOP establishment warms

by Jill Stanek

Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:23 EST

October 2, 2012 (JillStanek.com) - The final deadline for Missouri Republican U.S. Senate candidate Todd Akin to drop from the race came and went on September 25, and he did not.

The GOP establishment that had stood alongside Democrats and feminists to castigate Akin for his August 19 “legitimate rape” misstep must now eat crow [Yes!!]. The polls and grasp of the U.S. Senate are too close.

Todd Akin

This entire debacle separated pseudo-conservative Republicans who put party above principle from real ones who do the opposite. [Exactly!] They will say they were just being pragmatic. But c’mon, they way overreacted. The other side would never abandon one of its own were the situation reversed. But the other side walks in lockstep on abortion, while our side is afraid of and/or double-minded about it.  [I think the truth is that too many GOP politicians either don't care about the issue of abortion or even actually support abortion.  They obviously consider winning political races far more important than saving the lives of innocent babies.]
So we saw Missouri U.S. Senator Ray Blunt write in a statement the morning after the deadline passed, “I’ll be working for the Republican ticket in Missouri, and that includes Todd Akin,” when back in August Blunt was one of five Missouri senators to write in a statement that Akin should “step aside.”
Now the National Republican Senatorial Committee is calling Akin “a far more preferable candidate than liberal Senator Claire McCaskill,” and said that “we will continue to monitor this race closely,” i.e., spend money on Akin if his polls look good. NRSC’s backpedal earned it the “worst week in Washington” award in a Washington Post op ed[Well deserved, I might add.]

Even Karl Rove’s American Crossroads super-PAC appears to be equivocating, spokesman Nate Hodson telling ABC, “You kind of know where we are on Missouri. We don’t discuss any strategy moving forward” – tepid opposition at best, this after Rove wished for Akin to sleep with the fishes only a few weeks back.
Meanwhile, social conservative favorites Rick Santorum and U.S. Senator Jim DeMint issued a joint endorsement on September 26, and DeMint’s Senate Conservatives Fund, nemesis to colleague John Cornyn’s NRSC, pledged $290,000. Gary Bauer through his Campaign for Working Families has pledged a “six-figure” expenditure to help Akin.
Phyllis Schlafly also expressed her support and went further to ask people in an email on September 26 to call RNC Chairman Reince Priebus (202-863-8500) and Cornyn (202-675-6000) “and tell them they have an obligation to reverse their decision cutting off Republican money from Todd Akin. They have an obligation to open those bank accounts so Todd Akin and Mitt Romney can carry Missouri, the bellwether state.”

This might be why Preibus, who ludicrously claimed back in August, “He can be tied, we’re not gonna send him a penny,” said on September 28 Akin was “absolutely” a better option than McCaskill.

Former House Speaker and presidential candidate Newt Gingrich was campaigning for Akin even before the deadline and defended him well on Greta Van Susteran’s show last week.

Next to the presidential race, the Akin/McCaskill race will be the one I most pay attention to on November 6.  [That makes at least two of us.]

Please donate to Akin’s campaign here. Elect an authentic pro-lifer who may also help wrest the U.S. Senate from Harry Reid.

* * *
The Todd Akin campaign has been a true bellwether in the Republican party.  This incident would seem to say that many in the Republican leadership are much more interested in winning campaigns than in saving the unborn.  For me, Rep. Paul Ryan's reaction was the most stunning and most disappointing.  Rep. Ryan in the past had a very strong pro life record and had stood against abortion even in cases of rape.  He had actually drafted pro life legislation with Rep. Akin.  Yet, he personally called Akin to advise him to drop out of the race.  It seems he has completely sold out in order to be the VP candidate. We know Mitt Romney supports abortion in cases of pregnancies resulting from rape, and now it seems that Rep. Ryan does as well. 

Politics is as cut throat at is gets, and your close friends can become your enemies in a matter of minutes if you are perceived as a loser.  We all like to think that our representatives are there because they really care about us and the country and want to make things better.  I am sure that is true for some.  I do believe it's true for Todd Akin.  But let's face it, folks.  The people in Washington are mainly there for the power and all the perks that come with it.  If you really want change, you are going to have to do it yourself.  And the best place to start is on your knees in supplication to the only real Power there is. 

God Bless Todd Akin.  I admire his tenancity and courage, and I think that alone should qualify him to be Senator, or even more if he should ever choose to pursue it.  I hope the people of Missouri will see how truly genuine he is and give him a chance to prove that he will be a true representative for them.  He is David that stood up to Goliath. 

Take that, Karl Rove.

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