Missouri Rep. Todd Akin, running for the U.S. Senate, continues to draw fire over his remarks last weekend suggesting that women who are "legitimately raped" have a secret biological method to avoid conceiving a child after a rape. Akin said: "the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down."
He's since apologized, and run several ads saying he knows women can become pregnant through rape. But he later said his mistake was actually using a single word - legitimate - to describe rape.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep. By now, people across the nation have heard remarks by Missouri Republican Todd Akin. He says he misspoke about pregnancy and rape, but his words shifted the polls in his race for a vital U.S. Senate seat. Now Democrats want to be sure the remarks have a national effect. Here's NPR's Ari Shapiro.
In Tampa, where Republicans are gathering for their convention, Todd Akin has been meeting with supporters, including the Family Research Council, which, like Akin, opposes abortion rights. Connie Mackey heads the council's political action committees.
Mr. Akin, as I'm sure you know very well, as he defended his action, he said he misspoke, but then he said that he had said one word in one sentence on one day that was wrong. Is that all he got wrong?
In Tampa, Fla., a week ahead of their national convention, Republicans are drawing up their party platform. There are muted disagreements over a few issues, such as immigration and same-sex marriage. But at least within the platform committee, one of the least controversial issues discussed this week is abortion.
With little discussion, the committee on Tuesday adopted the same anti-abortion language it included in GOP platforms in 2004 and 2008. It seeks passage of a constitutional amendment that would extend legal rights to the unborn, essentially banning abortion.
With women's issues front and center again in the presidential campaign, a bus tour through several swing states kicked off Monday in opposition to President Obama's views on abortion.
At the same time, the Obama campaign launched a new TV ad — aimed at some of the same voters in some of the same key states — criticizing Republican Mitt Romney and his running mate, Paul Ryan, on the issue.