President Barack Obama: “Rape is Rape.”Posted: August 20, 2012
I have to hand it to President Obama. He hit all the right notes today in responding to the disgusting remarks by Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin. From TPM:
President Obama strongly condemned Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO) during a surprise press conference Monday for his remarks that “legitimate rape” doesn’t cause pregnancy. Obama said Akin’s statement was reflective of the broader Republican Party’s treatment of women.
“Let me first say the views expressed were offensive,” Obama said. “Rape is rape, and the idea that we should be parsing and qualifying and slicing what types of rape we’re talking about doesn’t make sense to the American people and certainly doesn’t make sense to me.”….
Obama, while acknowledging criticism of Akin from within the Republican Party, said that his remarks were indicative of the GOP’s anti-abortion record. He pointedly referenced a House Republican bill co-sponsored by Akin and Rep. Paul Ryan that distinguished “forcible rape” in banning funding for abortion, language that was subsequently withdrawn after an outcry from women’s advocacy groups.
“What I think these comments do underscore is why we shouldn’t have a bunch of politicians, a majority of whom are men, making health care decisions on behalf of women,” Obama said. “So although these particular comments have led Gov. Romney and other Republicans to distance themselves, I think that the underlying notion that we should be making decisions on behalf of women … or qualifying forcible rape versus non-forcible rape are broader issues.”
This is a strong affirmation of the President’s support women’s autonomy that I believe is on a par with the statement he made in support of gay marriage. Michelle, Malia,and Sasha must be very proud today.
During the same surprise appearance in the White House press room, Obama essentially said that Mitt Romney’s entire campaign has been based on a pack of lies. From Greg Sargent:
Obama was questioned sharply by a reporter who pointed to the Priorities USA ad featuring the dead woman and the Obama campaign’s pressure on Romney to release his tax returns, and asked whether he regretted his campaign’s tone. Obama responded, in part:
“I don’t think that Governor Romney is somehow responsible for the death of the woman that was portrayed in that ad. But keep in mind, this is an ad that I didn’t approve; I did not produce; and as far as I can tell, has barely run. I think it ran once. Now, in contrast, you’ve got Governor Romney creating as a centerpiece of his campaign this notion that we’re taking work requirement out of welfare. Which every single person here who’s looked at it says, it’s patently false…
“Everybody who’s looked at this says what Governor Romney is saying is absolutely wrong. Not only are his Super PACs running millions of dollars worth of ads making this claim; Governor Romney himself is approving this and saying it on the stump. So the contrast I think is pretty stark. They can run the campaign that theyw ant; but the truth of the matter is, you can’t just make stuff up. That’s one thing you learn as president of the United States. You get called into account.”
I know some people will condemn me as a “cockeyed optimist,” but I think Obama may have begun developing a backbone since his pitched battle with Republican leadership over the debt ceiling.