The presidential candidates have two very different reactions to Indiana Senate candidate Richard Mourdock’s recent comments about rape and abortion.
As previously reported by The Inquisitr, Mourdock is in the middle of a media firestorm for comments made Tuesday at an Indiana Senate debate regarding the right to an abortion in the instance of pregnancy resulting from a rape.
Mourdock stated: “I struggled with it myself for a long time, but I came to realize life is a gift from God, and I think even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen.”
The Senate candidate has since apologized for any offense his statement may have caused, saying his words were twisted. But in the wake of Mourdock’s comments the media is now looking to the presidential candidates for a response. Republican nominee Mitt Romney has so far refused to personally address the issue. He ignored repeated questions from Bloomberg’s Lisa Lerer and Reuters’ Sam Youngman while stopped at a diner in Cincinnati today.
The presidential hopeful has also refused to pull support for the Indiana Senate candidate. Romney’s campaign has said he does not agree with Mourdock’s statements but has not withdrawn his endorsement or ordered the ad he recently cut in support of Mourdock to be pulled from TV.
Meanwhile, President Barack Obama has used Romney’s refusal to withdraw his support of Mourdock to the President’s advantage. On Wednesday, female supporters of Obama received emails stating, “Mitt Romney has made only one ad endorsing a U.S. Senate candidate in this election: Indiana Republican Richard Mourdock.”
The GOP seems to have had a difficult time coming to a consensus on the issue of rape. There were the comments made last December by Wisconsin Representative Roger Rivard, who recalled his father warning him of the dangers of premarital sex by saying “some girls rape easy.” There was also the gaffe made by Representative Todd Akin in August who stated that “legitimate rape” rarely resulted in pregnancy.
And just as recently as last week, Illinois Representative Joe Walsh denounced exceptions to abortion bans that would allow for them in the instance the mother’s life was at risk. Mourdock’s statements this week on abortion and rape are yet another instance of members of the GOP’s wildly differing views on women’s rights.
The President further used Mourdock’s comments to boost his campaign when he appeared Wednesday on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Speaking of the overall difficulty the GOP has had with appealing to mainstream female voters the President said: “I don’t know how these guys come up with these ideas … Let me make a very simple proposition: Rape is rape. It is a crime. And so these various distinctions about rape don’t make too much sense to me — don’t make any sense to me.”
When Leno asked for his reaction to Mourdock’s comments the President responded: “Women are capable of making these decisions in consultation with their partners, with their doctors … And for politicians to want to intrude in this stuff often times without any information is a huge problem.”
With the election only weeks away, America will soon know if all of these statements regarding women’s rights and the candidates’ responses to the recent comments by Mourdock are going to have an impact on the presidential race.
What do you think? Should Romney come out and specifically address the issue? Is it wrong for President to Obama to use these statements to highlight the differences between his party and Republicans?