If Akin wanted to comment on abortion, which numerous polls indicate is a low priority for most voters in this election, when asked what he thought about abortion in cases of rape, he should have made the pro-choice side explain how they can defend more than 50 million abortions in the U.S. since 1973. He should have said that there are thousands of women's health centers available to assist women and their unborn children in a variety of ways. Abortion is not the only option.
Democrats and their friends in big media protect their own when accused of outrageous acts. Topping a long list is the late Senator Ted Kennedy, who drove off a bridge in Chappaquiddick, Mass., leaving a woman, not his wife, to drown. In 1978, Juanita Broaddrick, a Clinton campaign worker, accused Bill Clinton, then the attorney general of Arkansas, of rape. His advice for the fat lip he gave her, according to Broaddrick, was you'd "better get some ice for that." Clinton, Kennedy and many other Democratic (and, yes, some Republicans) engaged in outrageous behavior, but continued to serve in office. Akin is guilty of using the wrong words and Republicans run from him like scalded dogs.
Akin considers himself an "absolutist" when it comes to life. Theologically and morally he is right, but in what Scripture refers to as a "wicked and adulterous generation," he is unlikely to advance the pro-life cause by publicly stating this position during a volatile election season when the Senate majority is up for grabs.Akin shouldn't have to compromise his position. But if the goal is to reduce the number of abortions, focusing on pregnancy from rape does not advance that worthy objective.
Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
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