The chairwoman of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee criticized the national Republican Party for partially reconciling with Rep. Todd Akin, who in recent days has described his female opponent in the Missouri Senate as not being "ladylike" and behaving like "a wildcat."
The Chicago Tribune reports that during a campaign event on Wednesday, Akin likened Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill's performance at their first debate last week to that of a "wildcat." On Thursday, he told the Kansas City Star that McCaskill was "very aggressive" during the debate, and that she had been "much more ladylike" in her first campaign in 2006.
“Todd Akin is at it again with another comment that’s demeaning to women and offensive to all,” Murray said in a statement. “What’s truly astonishing is that the national party embraced Todd Akin yesterday and now refuses to repudiate his statement. Unless the national party condemns Todd Akin and his latest comments, every Republican candidate in the country will be held accountable for their support of Akin’s beliefs and sentiments.”
The Fix reported Wednesday that the National Republican Senatorial Committee had issued a statement supporting Akin, but stopping short of pledging the monetary support it has withheld since the congressman was widely criticized for saying last month that "legitimate rape" rarely causes pregnancy.
McCaskill leveled harsh criticism of Akin's rape remark in their first debate, calling him “extreme” and “far out on the fringe.”
Akin has said McCaskill came after him so hard because she was worried about losing the race.
"The first two minutes, wow, it’s like somebody let a wildcat out of the cage,” Akin told a small group of supporters and activists as his statewide bus tour stopped Wednesday evening in Rolla, a rural college town between St. Louis and Springfield, the Tribune reported. “She was just furious and attacking in every different direction, which was a little bit of a surprise to us.”
Although national party leaders, including Mitt Romney, have denounced Akin's comments and urged him to get out of the race, some conservative elected officials and activists have stood by him. The GOP senate campaign committee issued its statement of support a day after the deadline for Akin to withdraw had passed.