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by Peterr

Todd Akin’s Way With Words Continues

11:28 am in 2012 election by Peterr

Office of Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) (per Todd Akin)

Todd Akin sure has a way with words.

Back in August, it was his “legitimate rape” comment that caught everyone’s attention, and now PolitiMo has this report on Akin’s remarks last Saturday evening:

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Todd Akin said Democratic incumbent Claire McCaskill has fetched expansive government policies “like a dog” during her tenure in Washington.

Akin made the comparison during a fundraising event in Springfield, where he featured support from former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, one of the few national Republicans still backing Akin after much of the party establishment distanced themselves from his candidacy following the controversy earlier in the race surrounding his comments about “legitimate rape.”

“She goes to Washington, D.C., it’s a little bit like one of those dogs, ‘fetch,’” he said. “She goes to Washington, D.C., and get all of these taxes and red tape and bureaucracy and executive orders and agencies and brings all of this stuff and dumps it on us in Missouri.”

For a guy who was upset that Claire McCaskill was “unladylike” at their first debate, this strikes me as a rather impolite thing to say.

When Akin made his “legitimate rape” comments back in August, he tried to apologize and walk it back as the controversy grew. Will he do the same here, after the audio of his comments gets around?

Well . . . let’s see what Rick Tyler, Akin’s campaign spokesman, had to say this morning:

I’m guessing that’s a “no”.

 

Before McCaskill and her supporters start rubbing their hands together in glee at this story (“He put his foot in his mouth again!”), let me point out one troubling detail from the audio. As Akin finished laying out his metaphor, and before he could continue with his “that’s one of the reasons why . . .” pitch for their votes and their contributions, the crowd of supporters interrupted him with applause.

 

That is why Tyler not only didn’t walk back the “dog” metaphor, but cranked it up even higher.  As I wrote back in August, “Akin is not an aberration in the Missouri GOP. This is the state that gave the nation Rush “She’s a slut” Limbaugh, after all, as well as John “cover up the lady parts on that statue in the lobby” Ashcroft.” Comparing McCaskill to a dog is how the GOP in Missouri thinks, and it is how Akin as their standardbearer gets their attention and their support.

 

Now it’s up to McCaskill to see whether this will motivate her own supporters even harder to convince those in the middle that Akin is bad news for Missouri.

 

But at least Representative Todd Akin, the son of his mother, father of his daughters, husband of his wife, and pious Christian that he is, didn’t call Senator Claire McCaskill a bitch.

 

‘Cause that would be downright ungentlemanly.

 

_____

 

Photo h/t to Andrew Graham. I do not believe Mr. Graham is connected with the Akin campaign, and my use of his photo here should not be taken to imply his agreement with my comments either. I do believe, however, that Mr. Graham is a nice photographer.

by Peterr

Todd Akin, Rush Limbaugh, John Ashcroft, and Mark Twain

5:55 am in Conservatism, Elections by Peterr

Attaturk, that Iowan to the north, had much fun mocking Missouri’s GOP senate nominee, Representative Todd Akin for his comments on “legitimate rape.” And those comments were truly worthy of mockery.

To people here in Missouri, Akin’s comments were not terribly surprising. Akin is a known commodity — known to be highly conservative and well in keeping with a non-trivial slice of the Missouri electorate.

Like Br’er Rabbit telling Br’er Fox not to throw him in the briar patch, Claire McCaskill ran ads on Fox News during the GOP primary fight, calling Akin “too conservative for Missouri”. With an endorsement like that, conservatives in the GOP primary race were happy to hand Akin a victory with 36% of the vote. His two challengers were John Brunner (a conservative businessman trying to run a Romney-style “I know how to run things” campaign) who got 30%, and Sarah “I Want to be a Palin” Steelman who got 29%. The GOP primary was always going to go to the candidate who could best appeal to the most conservative elements of the Missouri GOP, and that was Akin.

And it wasn’t even close.

News flash to the rest of the nation: the 36% who supported Akin are neither surprised nor bothered by Akin’s comments. He may have said publicly what perhaps (for political reasons) ought to have been kept private, but make no mistake. The far right wing of Missouri’s republican party likes this guy and likes what he said. Period. If Akin were to quit the race because of pressure from Romney or Mitch McConnell, they’d be beyond angry. Akin is their guy, and they would not take kindly to outside agitators forcing him to quit.

Akin is not an aberration in the Missouri GOP. This is the state that gave the nation Rush “She’s a slut” Limbaugh, after all, as well as John “cover up the lady parts on that statue in the lobby” Ashcroft.

But this is also the state whose internal political debates over slavery — conducted with the same sense of nuance and humility as Limbaugh, Ashcroft, and Akin discuss sex — shaped the pen and wit of young Samuel Clemens. If Missouri’s politicians were reasonable folks, Clemens might never have taken up political commentary and satire as Mark Twain.

I look at my kid and his classmates and wonder which of them will grow up to be the next great political satirist. God knows that with folks like Akin around, there’s plenty for them to work with as they learn the fine art of political snark.

UPDATE: County by county primary results are here. Looking at the map, you can see a couple of things. (1) The big dark blue patch just west and north of St. Louis is Akin’s conservative home district. (2) The blue patch in the southwestern corner of the state is John Ashcroft country. (3) The blue patch in the southeastern corner of the state is where Rush has his roots.