CNN contributor Erick Erickson jumped to deflect criticism from Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO) after Akin said that “legitimate rape” rarely results in pregnancies. In his response, Erickson used a discredited criticism of President Obama.
Asked during a local television interview whether he would keep abortion legal in the case of rape, Akin said:
AKIN: First of all, from what I understand from doctors, that's really rare. If it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. But let's assume that maybe that didn't work, or something. You know, I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be on the rapist and not attacking the child.
Akin has subsequently said: “In reviewing my off-the-cuff remarks, it's clear that I misspoke in this interview and it does not reflect the deep empathy I hold for the thousands of women who are raped and abused every year.”
Erickson responded to Akin's comments by writing:
Todd Akin, the Republican Senate nominee in Missouri, made an inarticulate and rather dumb statement about rape and abortion on television in Missouri. He subsequently clarified his remarks. Congressman Akin, like many devout Christians, does not believe in a rape exception for abortion.
Erickson later added that he'd “take Todd Akin's inarticulate remarks over an infanticide supporter any day of the week”:
Todd Akin was inarticulate. Some are now accusing him of being pro-rape. The people horrid by Todd Akin's remarks are, I'm sure, thrilled to have a President who defended infanticide. I'll take Todd Akin's inarticulate remarks over an infanticide supporter any day of the week.
And no, this is not hyperbole. President Obama was the only member of the Illinois State Senate to speak in favor of the position that a child who survives an abortion and fully exits the womb can still be killed by the abortionist.
By using the term “infanticide supporter,” Erickson was referencing a long-discredited claim that President Obama once took a pro-infanticide position.
CNN contributor Dana Loesch also defended Akin yesterday on Twitter, writing that. “Akin was trying to fit medical explanation into a soundbite.”
However, CNN itself has reported that 5 percent of rapes lead to pregnancy:
Statistics on pregnancies that result from rape are difficult to produce, since rape is a crime that often goes unreported. The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network, along with Planned Parenthood, each estimate that 5% of rapes lead to pregnancy. A 1996 study from the Medical University of South Carolina found the same percentage, adding that 32,101 pregnancies occurred annually from rape.