What if Rape Is a Campaign Strategy?
I’m just wondering if the Republican Party has decided that outrageous comments about rape is politically advantageous. The comments we are currently seeing cannot be spontaneous. They’re not being made by some country bumpkin running for city dogcatcher. Instead, these are serious candidates running for major offices (both Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock are running for US Senate in their respective states). Both of these guys have put in a lot of time. Both of these candidates have raised a lot of money. Both these candidates have been on the national stage with major political backing from the RNC.
Mourdock said, “I’ve struggled with it myself for a long time, but I came to realize that life is that gift from god. And even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen.”
Maybe there’s some polling hidden deep in some Republican’s file cabinet (Karl Rove) that suggests talking about rape in religious terms galvanizes evangelicals more than it repulses liberals and moderates. I don’t know. What I do know is that most of the things that are being said at the level of a U.S. Senate candidate is incredibly scripted. There are almost no spontaneous moments. Candidates are very cautious of what they say and how they say it. (Remember George Allen??) A misplaced statement here or there can mean disaster.
The main problem with Mourdock’s statement is that it is really the mainstream Republican position. Here’s what Jon Stewart has to said on the subject.