Todd Akin’s disastrous comeback tour continued on Thursday, when the disgraced former congressman attempted to explain his infamous “legitimate rape” comments on MSNBC’s The Daily Rundown.
It did not go well.
During the interview, Akin once again walked back his 2012 apology for claiming that victims of “legitimate rape” rarely get pregnant, because “the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”
“Well, here, let me just try to give you an explanation. Legitimate rape is a law-enforcement term and it’s abbreviation for legitimate case of rape,” Akin told host Chuck Todd. “If I had been choosing my words better, I should have said legitimate case of rape. And I have acknowledged that it is a poor choice of words.”
“The thing that strikes me as odd is this is something that was intentionally misunderstood and twisted for political purposes,” Akin continued, “because it doesn’t make any sense to say a conservative is saying that rape is legitimate.”
Akin then attempted to pivot towards attacking Bill and Hillary Clinton, before Todd pushed back.
“This is still about you. This is still about you classifying rape in this odd way,” Todd insisted. “Should abortion be legal for somebody who has been raped?”
“Here’s the question,” Akin countered. “Should the child conceived in rape have the same right to life as a child conceived in love?”
“I had a number of people on my campaign that were children, that had grown up, that had been conceived in rape,” he added.
When Todd pointed out that this undermines the argument that a woman’s body can “shut down” a rape-induced pregnancy, Akin insisted that “I’m not presenting myself as a doctor,” but pointed to “six recent studies” that back up his bogus science.
There was a thin silver lining for Republicans; although Akin did try to revive his cringeworthy “Bill Clinton is a legitimate rapist” talking point, at least he did not compare himself to Joe McCarthy on national television.
The full interview can be seen in all of its uncomfortable glory below, via MSNBC:
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