On Monday night, Republican National Committee Chair Reince Priebus was the latest to respond to the firestorm surrounding Rep. Todd Akin‘s recent remarks regarding “legitimate rape” and abortion. Speaking to CNN’s Erin Burnett, Priebus called Akin’s comment “dumb” and “bizarre” — later noting that he’d prefer Akin not attend the Republican National Convention next week.
“If it was me, I would step aside and let someone else run for that office,” Priebus said, including the disclaimer, “I wouldn’t say anything that dumb.”
Priebus further characterized Akin’s words as “bizarre” and “biologically stupid.” Ultimately, he said, Akin’s the one who has to make the call about whether to remain in the race — but he added that he hopes Akin will hear the discussion coming from both sides of the aisle.
Eager to change the tone of the conversation, Priebus emphasized that this controversy and this issue is not what the election “is going to turn on” — but, in the meantime, they are dealing with “this situation.”
Priebus and Burnett then found themselves in a debate about the coveted women’s vote come November, and Priebus argued that it’s incorrect to assume that most women are pro-abortion. The GOP is proud to be pro-life, he said — underlining his belief that pro-life and pro-women can go hand in hand. When Burnett mentioned Paul Ryan‘s earlier stance on abortion (against it, including in cases of rape and incest), Priebus pointed to the Romney/Ryan ticket’s stance.
About the bill Ryan co-sponsored (and which links him to Akin), Priebus said that issue was about whether taxpayer money should go toward abortion, which is a “totally separate matter.”
The segment ended full circle with mention again of Akin. Is he welcome at the convention? Priebus replied, “I would prefer him not come.”
Take a look, via CNN:
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