Republicans Reject Todd Akin Legitimate Abortion Comment in Public, Yet Support Him Behind Closed Doors

While the Republican leadership, including Mitt Romney, has called on Rep. Todd Akin to step down, they have simultaneously released a platform plank calling for a constitutional amendment to ban all abortions, with no exceptions, including rape and incest.

This is further proof that the GOP considers every woman’s body to be property – their property – to do with as they see fit. This hypocrisy cannot go unchallenged. How can GOP leadership reprimand their Senate hopeful with one hand, while endorse exactly what he said with the other hand. The mere word of “legitimate rape" is not the primary offense here. It is his idea that that women who are legitimately raped can't get pregnant that is truly offensive.

This information is still held as truth by Akin, and apparently the Republican Party comes from a 1350 court case which held in favor of the nobleman against a peasant farm girl who he had raped. Needless to say, medicine since about 1815 has held this to be untrue. And yet the GOP platform requesting a constitutional amendment to ban abortion of any kind for any reason would seem to be in favor of that 1350 court decision. 

If there was any doubt about Paul Ryan's position on this issue, Ryan sponsored a bill that would have allowed a rapist to sue his victim to stop an abortion.

According to CNN, this isn’t new. “The GOP's abortion platform hasn’t changed in 12 years; the same language was adopted by the party at their conventions in 2000, 2004 and 2008.” So while it's worth noting that the preliminary vote on this platform is not until Wednesday, and the full convention vote doesn't happen until next week, the probability is that this will be accepted.

Here is their specific language:"Maintaining The Sanctity and Dignity of Human Life"

Faithful to the first guarantee of the Declaration of Independence, we assert the inherent dignity and sanctity of all human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution, and we endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children. We oppose using public revenues to promote or perform abortion and will not fund organizations which advocate it. We support the appointment of judges who respect traditional family values and the sanctity and dignity of innocent human life.

We have made progress. The Supreme Court has upheld prohibitions against the barbaric practice of partial-birth abortion. States are now permitted to extend health-care coverage to children before birth. And the Born Alive Infants Protection Act has become law; this law ensures that infants who are born alive during an abortion receive all treatment and care that is provided to all newborn infants and are not neglected and left to die. We must protect girls from exploitation and statutory rape through a parental notification requirement. We all have a moral obligation to assist, not to penalize, women struggling with the challenges of an unplanned pregnancy. At its core, abortion is a fundamental assault on the sanctity of innocent human life. Women deserve better than abortion. Every effort should be made to work with women considering abortion to enable and empower them to choose life. We salute those who provide them alternatives, including pregnancy care centers, and we take pride in the tremendous increase in adoptions that has followed Republican legislative initiatives

Respect for life requires efforts to include persons with disabilities in education, employment, the justice system, and civic participation. In keeping with that commitment, we oppose the nonconsensual withholding of care or treatment from people with disabilities, as well as the elderly and infirm, just as we oppose euthanasia and assisted suicide, which endanger especially those on the margins of society. Because government should set a positive standard in hiring and contracting for the services of persons with disabilities, we need to update the statutory authority for the AbilityOne program, the main avenue by which those productive members of our society can offer high quality services at the best possible value.

Note that there is no provision for exceptions of any kind in this statement.Well, Ryan has worked very closely with Congressman Akin in the past to redefine rape in America. It was Ryan and Akin who coined the phrase violent rape, as if any form of rape wasn't violent, to differentiate that from something I don't understand. Perhaps they thought that if a woman doesn’t fight back hard enough, that the crime should be changed to consensual rape.

Congressman Akin's “unfortunate" comment came on Sunday. Fortunately for the rest of us, it also pointed out the absolute hypocrisy of the Republican Party's seemingly dual position in censuring Akin and still putting this travesty into their platform. According to the Christian Science Monitor, it was all just a case of bad timing. But the New York Times seems to have a different opinion, calling this entire Republican platform mean-spirited. This writer is agrees. Despite the wonderful language and excellent salesmanship found in the wording of the entire platform, most of what is there will do damage to the majority of Americans.

While it's noteworthy than that Romney is stepping away from the Republican Party platform, there is still no denying that this is the party platform. As we've seen with Obama, a president without a Congress behind him that will support at least some of the proposals the president makes is actually almost powerless to make any policy stick. With a Republican Congress, neither Romney nor Obama could run far enough away from the Republican platform. It will follow them, and the rest of the country, everywhere.