Republicans took to the Sunday talk shows this morning to repeat their calls for Rep. Todd Akin to quit the Missouri Senate race following last Sunday’s “legitimate rape” comment.
Democrats have seized on Akin’s gaffe in an effort to gain traction with female voters and have sought to tie Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan to the congressman’s scientifically inaccurate comment.
Nontheless, Akin has dug in his heels and has received support from evangelical leaders within the GOP – most notably from former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.
But Republicans ranging from RNC Chairman Reince Priebus to 2008 GOP presidential nominee Sen. John McCain were unanimous in telling Akin to quit this morning.
Priebus repeated his earlier call for Akin to step aside during appearances on CNN’s State of the Union with Candy Crowley and on CBS’s Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer.
“I called it biologically stupid,” Priebus said, regarding Akin’s suggestion that a woman cannot get pregnant as a result of a rape, on State of the Union. “I think he should get out of the race; he’s got time to get out of the race, and I think he oughta put the mission of liberty and freedom ahead of himself.
“I think he should get out, and so do a lot of others.”
Akin’s decision to stay in the race makes it harder for Republicans to recapture the Senate, according to Priebus.
McCain had similar words on NBC’s Meet the Press.
“Mr. Akin should recognize that having the nomination of your party is a privilege, and if you abuse that privilege then you are not eligible to keep it,” McCain said. “What he did was unacceptable.”
The former presidential candidate went on to say that Akin needs to know that he will not have the support of the mainstream of the Republican Party if he continues his candidacy.
And Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) joined the chorus during an appearance on Face the Nation, saying that dropping out ultimately is Akin’s to make and warned that the Missouri congressman has jeopardized Republican chances or taking over the Senate.
“When you make statements like that, in addition to their being offensive to people like myself and many others, they also hurt your chances of winning,” Rubio said. “So he’s been informed of that.”
Akin’s decision to stay in the race makes it virtually impossible for Republicans to win, Rubio said.