TAMPA -- Family Research Council president Tony Perkins said he will continue to stand by embattled Missouri Rep. Todd Akin (R) if Akin chooses to remain in his race for the U.S. Senate against Sen. Claire McCaskill.

"If Todd wants to stay in the race, I will continue to support him," Perkins said in an interview. "I think his comments were indefensible. I think they were inappropriate. He’s acknowledged as such. But you know, when others have made mistakes, you haven’t seen the entire Republican establishment abandon him. I think it’s somewhat suspect."

Perkins said he has conveyed that message to other Republican leaders, many of whom have been strongly urging Akin to leave the race because of controversial comments dealing with abortion and rape.

Perkins compared Akin's situation to that of former Virginia senator and governor Sen. George Allen, who came under fire during his reelection effort in 2006 after calling an aide to his opponent "macaca."

"When George Allen made some comments a few years ago, you didn't see the Senatorial committee pulling its support from him. You didn’t see people abandoning him," he said.