Don’t Tell My Heart, My Akin Breakin’ Heart…

So the bottom line is that Rep. Todd Akin has until 5 PM central this afternoon to drop out of the Missouri Senate race under the state law.  After that, things get much more complex.  Republicans are desperately trying to get Akin to drop out of the race, but not because they think what he said was wrong, but because they’ll cost the GOP a Senate seat they’ll basically have to have in order to take control of the upper chamber in January.   Many in the GOP are calling for Akin to leave the race.  Nobody in the GOP is calling for him to leave the House as well, which is why I call hypocrisy on basically the entire party.  If what he said was as “indefensible” as the lip service suggests, then he shouldn’t be in Congress, period, right?

Anthony Weiner was driven out for less.

But it seems there are plenty of Missourians who really don’t care if Akin is an awful human being.  Republicans will vote for him anyway.  Only winning matters to them, as the latest PPP poll shows:

Missouri voters strongly disagree with the comments Todd Akin made about abortion over the weekend, but it hasn’t moved the numbers a whole lot in the Senate race. Akin leads Claire McCaskill by a single point, 44-43. That’s basically identical to our last poll of the contest in late May, which found Akin ahead by a 45-44 spread.

It’s not that Missouri voters are ok with or supportive of Akin’s comments. 75% of voters, including even 64% of Republicans, say they were inappropriate to only 9% who consider them to have been appropriate. 79% of voters say they disagree with what Akin said, including 65% who express ‘strong’ disagreement with him. 51% of GOP voters say they strongly disagree with him.

All of that is taking a toll on Akin’s image. Only 24% of voters have a favorable opinion of him to 58% with a negative one. He’s pretty universally disliked by Democrats (3/85) and independents (21/61) and even with Republicans (43/34) he’s on only narrowly positive ground.

But for all of that the overall numbers in the race have moved very little. When we polled in May McCaskill was getting only 8% of the Republican vote, and even with the controversy around Akin she’s only pushed up to 10% of it. GOP voters dislike McCaskill so much they’re not going to vote for her no matter what their nominee does. Independent voters haven’t moved at all either. In May they supported Akin 45-41, and even though they don’t like him on tonight’s poll we still found him leading 45-41 with them.

There’s your Republican Party, folks.  Even with such awful favorability numbers, even with these massively ignorant comments, even with his long record of being a far-right lunatic…there’s a good chance that Missourians are going to vote the asshole into the Senate anyhow, effectively giving him a promotion.

What could Todd Akin do to lose support of Republicans in the state?  Act like a human being with a functioning soul, I guess.  Treat women, gays, and racial minorities with respect, that would lose him plenty of support among the troglodytes.

We’ll see how the day unfolds.  My guess is Akin stays, and McCaskill remains in the toughest election battle of her career.  All that motivates Republicans in 2012 is hatred of Democrats.  Akin could eat a kitten on live TV and he’d still be within the margin of polling error because he doesn’t have (D) after his name.

He’d get 27% of the vote if he clubbed a baby seal on The View while Hank Williams Jr. and Dave Mustaine were playing “Beat The Devil’s Tattoo” and the seal was named Barack.  Minimum.






96 replies
  1. 1
    amk says:

    ppp is stupid to poll this early. How many peeps are even aware of this islamofascist at this point ? It’s hardly 24 hours since this cretin was exposed by his own words.

  2. 2
    Smedley the uncertain says:

    Whats with McCaskill’s comments that he still a nice guy, sincere and all that….
    Is she suicidal?

  3. 3
    Face says:

    I called this yesterday. That Missourians dont give a shit about what he says/does, as long as there’s an “R” next to his moniker. He could shit on the flag and wipe his ass with the a picture of Rush and probably lose 1.3 total voters in MO.

    The state is whack. Seriously, insanely whack.

  4. 4
    Violet says:

    I don’t put a lot of stock in a poll this early. Plus, there’s probably a fair amount of “you can’t tell us what to do! FU!”-ness going on in MO. We’ll see how it plays out in a month when people have had a chance to absorb what he said/who he is. And the Dems have had a better chance to tie Ryan to him.

  5. 5
    Balconesfault says:

    Claire McCaskell gets her reward for her 48% voting record on the Progressive Scorecard.

    Republicans still hate her.

  6. 6
    beltane says:

    I’m not sure why Akin’s comments caused any sort of furor among establishment Republicans. He was merely expressing the prevailing 10th century Republican understanding of how human reproduction works. Ignorance is clearly not bliss or Republican base voters would be the happiest little creatures on the planet which they clearly are not.

  7. 7
    Balconesfault says:

    @beltane: They still have to act offended when someone uses the N-word in public, too.

  8. 8
    japa21 says:

    Just to point something out. The May poll was prior to the primary that Akin won. He was the only candidate that MCCaskill was even within spitting distance off.

    Recent polls had given Akin up to an 11 point lead. If those polls were accurate, this has hurt Akin big time and can possibly continue to do so. This may become McCaskill’s race to lose.

    There is some mention in recent polls that Obama is neck and neck with Romney in Missouri, and if the pro-Obama voters see him having a chance to win there and turn out big, that can push McCaskill to victory.

    Lot’s of if’s but I think it would be wrong to say that this hasn’t hurt Akin.

    Plus, what amk said, awfully early to really assess the full damage. This is far more consequential than aqua Buddha in KY.

  9. 9
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    What could Todd Akin do to lose support of Republicans in the state?

    Become a Democrat.
    Eat roasted fetus on a stick as a Democrat.
    Invest in a company that profited off of discarded fetuses as a Democrat.
    Refuse to disclose your tax returns as a Democrat.
    Save 100 children from dying in a fire as a Democrat.
    Balance the budget as a Democrat.
    Kill bin Laden as a Democrat.

    There are lots of things he could do to lose support of Republicans.

  10. 10
    MattF says:

    Akin committed what I’d call a ‘golf course’ gaffe. It’s the stuff you say when you’re playing a round with the local money guys. And then, being stupid, it’s the first thing that comes into your mind in a TV interview, and you say it. Ooops.

  11. 11
    1badbaba3 says:

    Be patient all. Let us allow that kenyansocialistislamofascistmetrosexualblackabelincoln juju to work it’s magic (black, of course). It works in mysterious ways, as we have seen over the past four years.

  12. 12
    jwb says:

    @amk: There’s nothing particularly stupid about polling now. What’s stupid is drawing any sort of firm conclusion from a quick poll like this. What the poll shows is that Akin took a huge hit to his favorability rating. It also suggests, I think, that McCaskill faces a large amount of inertial disapproval. So support for Akin has been softened, but McCaskill will probably still have to do something to convince those voters to move from Akin to her.

  13. 13
    xian says:

    per election.princeton.edu that PPP analysis is flawed, comparing August to May and ignoring an 8-10 point drop visible from other more frequent polls.

    also Akin gave up his house seat.

  14. 14
    Someguy says:

    You can try to ignore it but let’s face facts: Akin won’t get out because his insane delusional beliefs are representative of the beliefs of Republican party types and voters as a whole.

    The outraged screams from the 27 percenters are because they’ve been caught and this will hurt them with Independent voters.

  15. 15
    wrb says:

    He’d get 27% of the vote if he clubbed a baby seal on The View while Hank Williams Jr. and Dave Mustaine were playing “Beat The Devil’s Tattoo” and the seal was named Barack. Minimum.

    No, that would bring him up to 55%.

    People may not think ol’ Tod’s much of an expert on ladyparts and their secretions but he’s shown that he’s the man when it comes to making liberals mad, and that’s what matters.

    On the other hand, him opening his trap right when people were getting to know Ryan is an amazing gift.

    On the other hand Obama continues to be the luckiest pol ever and Ryan looks like the gift that keeps giving. He’s the shackles that will bind the whole party to his vicious innumerate
    economics, Randian nuttiness and now Akin’s thinkin’ on social issues.

  16. 16
    JGabriel says:

    __
    __
    Zandar @ Top:

    Akin could eat a kitten on live TV and he’d still be within the margin of polling error because he doesn’t have (D) after his name. … All that motivates Republicans in 2012 is hatred of Democrats.

    Pshaw! If Akin skull-fucked a kitten, his numbers among GOP voters would improve.

    It’s not just that Republicans hate Democrats, it’s that they’re sadists too.

    (And yes, Balloon Juice still holds the top three search results on Google for the phrase “skull-fuck a kitten”.)

    .

  17. 17
    Grumpy Code Monkey says:

    Anthony Weiner was driven out for less.

    I wouldn’t call sending images of your schlong to strange women “less”.

  18. 18
    Soonergrunt says:

    @ Zandar:
    Let me fix that for you:

    All that motivates Republicans in 2012 is hatred of Democrats. Akin could eat skull fuck a kitten on live TV and he’d still be within the margin of polling error because he doesn’t have (D) after his name.

    This IS Balloon-Juice, you know.

    @JGabriel: got there first.

  19. 19
    JGabriel says:

    @amk:

    ppp is stupid to poll this early. How many peeps are even aware of this islamofascist at this point ? It’s hardly 24 hours since this cretin was exposed by his own words.

    I wouldn’t call PPP stupid, but I agree with your point. I’m more interested in seeing how these remarks affect Akin’s approval ratings and polling against McCaskill in a few days, or even a week or two, than while it’s still filtering out to voters through the media.

    Edited to Add: I seem to recall that it took a little while, and tons of Democratic pounding, for George Allen’s macaca remarks to affect his polling numbers too.

    .

  20. 20
    Nicole says:

    @xian: He didn’t give up his House seat; he decided not to run for it again because he wanted to run for the Senate. As Anthony Weiner demonstrated, it is actually possible to give up a House seat before the term is over. I doubt Akin does that.

    On the bright side, if he drops out, unless the GOP cuts some sort of deal with him where he can decide to run for re-election to the House, come 2013, he’s out of Congress entirely.

  21. 21
    Alex S. says:

    Snap polls often favor conservatives. Democratic-leaning voters are less interested in politics, young without landlines, shift workers etc… It’s harder to get liberals on the phone, so a snap poll might underestimate McCaskill`s support. On the other hand, PPP leans democratic… I think a tie is probably about right. Missouri has been close in the past cycles.

  22. 22
    Cassidy says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent): Or just be dark skinned.

  23. 23
    jheartney says:

    It takes a while for this sort of flash-scandal to be reflected in polling. The bad news for the goopers is that they have a hard deadline today at 5, too soon for it to show, and so Akin’s camp doesn’t yet have the evidence that their guy is mortally wounded. The GOP pros know it though, which is why they moved so fast to dump him.

    Assuming Akin stays in, eventually the wingnut money will start flowing back. No way they leave him hanging with the Senate at stake.

  24. 24
    mk3872 says:

    The views expressed by Akin are already well-held beliefs among the conservative base.

    He just made the mistake of speaking it out loud.

    Why would Repubs not still vote for the guy?

  25. 25
    jwb says:

    ha, ha, ha. So PPP is being accused by conservatives of cooking its poll to show Akin’s support as stronger than it actually is. More popcorn, please.

  26. 26
    Leo says:

    @Smedley the uncertain: McCaskill wants Akin to stay in the race. Whoever replaces him will be much harder to beat. So she is condemning his statement but praising him for saying what he believes. And she is pushing hard, hard, hard on the idea that if Akin is replaced it will be party bigwigs overruling the will of the voters.

    I agree with this strategy. I think it is better both in Missouri and nationally to have Akin remain in the race.

  27. 27
    jimmiraybob says:

    All that motivates Republicans in 2012 is hatred of Democrats.

    That’s for the little people. You’ve got to remember that Akin’s constituency are just simple farmers. They are people of the land. The common clay of the heartland. You know, ….

    The real players want the money and the power.

  28. 28
    Cassidy says:

    @Soonergrunt:

    This IS Balloon-Juice, you know.

    We have standards.

  29. 29
    Hoodie says:

    The PPP poll could be considered a good thing, as it may encourage Akin to stay in. The Repub establishment was against him in the primary (even Snowbilly Snooki supported one of the other candidates), so he probably has a chip on his shoulder to begin with. If he stays in, this is the kind of thing that will eventually sink in with at least some of the uncommitted electorate as think about the disgusting implications of what he said (e.g., the Onion piece on a woman being relieved that she really wasn’t raped because she got pregnant). It may also cause the media to dig up more Akin idiocy, of which there is plenty. Missouri has some big issues, but there are still some sane people there, and this could bring them out to the polls or, at least, keep them from voting for Akin.

  30. 30
    JGabriel says:

    __
    __
    Leo:

    I think it is better both in Missouri and nationally to have Akin remain in the race.

    Plus, think of the national fund-raising letters & e-mails Democrats can send out featuring Akins. He’s a gold mine, I tell ya, a gold mine!

    (What? Too soon?)

    .

  31. 31
    aimai says:

    @MattF:
    Its not a golf course gaffe, its a fundamental belief of a whole subset of anti-abortion people in this country. Its related to the problem of the “good god”–If you are insisting on believing that every pregnancy is chosen by g-d to exist (despite the 1/3 of all 1st trimester pregnancies that end in spontaneous abortion) then you have to account for the cruelty of forced pregnancy through rape. This is just one way that these people handle the cognitive dissonance. They insist, first, that mot rapes aren’t real rapes, and that most people who want abortions don’t have a “real” reason to have the abortion, and then they magically wave a wand and dismiss even the existence of unwanted pregnancies by insisting that biology doesn’t permit a woman to get pregnant against her will. This is not even a gaffe. Perhaps what you mean is that this is evidence of epistemic closure on a grand scale-that a man being interviewed on public TV is unaware of how completely insane his viewpoint is.

    aimai

  32. 32
    red dog says:

    Conservative “christian ladies” know that they would never be anywhere a rapist would be so this is a “fallen woman” issue and the whore deserved the result. Of course their husbands agree to find these gals. I used to live in a very red state and this point of view drove me out.

  33. 33
    The Moar You Know says:

    Anthony Weiner was driven out for less.

    Democrats drove Anthony Weiner out for much less.

    Republicans rally round instead.

    Is there a lesson to be learned here? Naw, it’s better to feel good about yourself than win.

  34. 34
    redshirt says:

    @Hoodie: Yes, exactly this. Let Akin thinks he can still win it, and ignore the RNC power brokers and stay in. Then lose. Win win for the forces of Good.

  35. 35
    japa21 says:

    Interesting comment on the PPP thread:

    MO party ID edge according to exit polls.

    2010 R+3
    2008 D+6
    2006 R+2
    2004 R+1

    So 2010 R+3 was most Republican heavy turnout for quite a while.

    Your poll has R+9, your May poll had D+2, this means that despite of Akin having 1 point lead as he had in May, his support has collapsed.

  36. 36
    The Dangerman says:

    I think he stays in and might even win; that’s not the problem for the Republicans. He’s now this elections Christine O’Donnell and his “I’m not a letch” commercials will get played nationally.

  37. 37
  38. 38
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    Zandar, the Missouri election ain’t about the attitude of Republicans towards Akin, it’s about the attitude of women, specifically in the over 35 demographic where Akin is clobbering McCaskill. These women have a lot of thinking to do.

    Are they going to continue playing enabler to this misogynist or will a sizable fraction decide the line has finally been crossed? Remember, this is a man they’ve supported for over a decade. That kind of support does not erode overnight. Right now Akin’s lead with women over 35 is 53 to 39. If that lead shrinks to single digits over the next three months, that may be enough to swing the election to McCaskill.

    Make no mistake about it — white women who are secretly dissatisfied with the status quo have to make this happen. White men certainly aren’t going to do it. They’re already winning.

  39. 39
    Soonergrunt says:

    @The Moar You Know: I don’t know that they’re exactly rallying around Akin. In this case, unlike a lot of these kinds of things with them, the rats are abandoning the sinking ship.
    I wonder what Diaper Dave Vitter has to say about this.

  40. 40
    bemused says:

    @red dog:

    What happens when good “Christian” women and girls get raped? Do their families think they are to blame somehow but they are “forgiven” or what?

    “Of course, their husbands agree to find these gals.” What does that mean exactly?

  41. 41
    wrb says:

    What’s with it with Republicans and election season? This is starting to seem like the fabled Year of the Wide Stance.

  42. 42
    Lihtox says:

    All that motivates Republicans in 2012 is hatred of Democrats.

    To be fair, hatred of Republicans is my primary motivation, and probably for some of you too? If the presidential election were between Mitt Romney and John Edwards, who would you vote for? It would be a hard decision for me.

    There was a time when I was willing to vote for individual Republicans, but right now a vote for any one GOP is a vote for ALL of the GOP. Dems are less uniform, but I can’t blame MO GOoPers for having the same attitude I do.

    It sucks.

  43. 43
    Cassidy says:

    @The Ancient Randonneur: Admittedly, they’re either perverse or just floating lsightly higher than the bottom of the barrel, but standards nonetheless.

  44. 44
    JGabriel says:

    __
    __
    The Moar You Know:

    Republicans rally round instead.

    To be fair, this appears to be one of the rare instances where the majority of the Republican leadership is not rallying around.

    Of course that’s probably not because of principle but because they’re already losing women voters so fast they have to apply a tourniquet to stanch the bleeding. That said, they’re not really rallying around this time — though I suppose they still might, if Akin’s numbers were to improve in MO instead of getting worse, but that’s a terribly unlikely if.

    .

  45. 45
    Cassidy says:

    @Lihtox: Wouldn’t be a hard decision for me at all. The Democratic Party could nominate a tree stump and I’ll vote for that before I vote for a Republican. I won’t even vote for someone who claims no party affiliation or independent.

  46. 46
    MattF says:

    @aimai: Your last sentence is closer to my thinking. I’ve heard people characterize their own views as “to the right of Genghis Khan”– so they know there’s a spectrum of opinions– but don’t really see that their opinions are derived from an ideology.

  47. 47
    lonesomerobot says:

    The PPP poll is actually perfect for McCaskill. It emboldens Akin to stay in the race, even though the national party infrastructure have already pulled the plug, and many notable republicans (including uber-dumbass and right wing talk douche Sean Hannity) have publicly called for him to withdraw. Ten weeks is a looooong time for McCaskill’s campaign to get to run ads using the words of Akin’s fellow republicans against him, basically saying he’s unfit to be a senator.

    I know it’s easy to just conclude that the majority of Show-me-staters are just Akin’s fellow troglodytes, but I think if he stays in this actually won’t be “the political battle of Claire McCaskill’s life,” it will actually get to a point where with about 2 weeks to go, Nate Silver is calling this a safe seat for Dems. She may never get more than 45% of the vote, but in 6-8 weeks, with no big money to float his campaign, Akin will be toast and republicans will hate him for staying when they would’ve had this seat easily otherwise.

    Please, dumbass republicans — more unforced errors like this.

  48. 48
    JGabriel says:

    __
    __
    Y’know, when I think about how totally off-the-wall nutters Akin’s remarks were, it makes me wonder, where’s Brick Oven Bill been lately?

    I mean, Akin’s remarks were the kind of crazy juice you’d expect to see BOB in here defending, heart and soul. In fact, I wouldn’t be at all surprised to find out that BOB and Akins were … the same person!

    .

  49. 49
    jp7505a says:

    The GOP abotion plank is basically the Atkins position without the ‘legitamte’. They want a constitutional ammendment baning all abortions. Kinda replay of the zygote = a human being laws. And the electron remains a dead heat(sigh).

  50. 50
    lonesomerobot says:

    @Lihtox: I don’t know if that is fair, though. My hatred of republicans isn’t from some irrational preference for being lied to and having no care to actually educate myself independently when it comes to policy discussions. It comes from the clear pattern of prejudice, fear-sowing, ignorance-celebrating, and outright hatred of intelligence, fairness, and the seeking of peace that is exemplified by today’s republican party.

  51. 51
    Nina says:

    Many rapes go unreported and unprosecuted. I suspect that a “Christian” woman is less likely to report a rape than one of us heathen types, for fear that she’ll discover just this attitude. So openly she’ll harden her heart and become more conservative, but in the privacy of the voting booth, will she vote for the same type of person who’s been telling her what a whore and sinner she is, or will she find the courage to repudiate that belief system?

    I suspect that this issue will affect more votes than the pollsters hear. The privacy of the voting booth can free you from a lot of things. There may be a negative Bradley effect on Akin.

  52. 52
    jp7505a says:

    @Lihtox: I’d write in a strong independent voice – The Purple People eater. Imagine him and the Big Dog jamming on Leno

  53. 53
    Keith G says:

    @Grumpy Code Monkey: You are right.

    Anthony Weiner was driven out for less

    This is the stupidest thing typed by an FPer in quite a while. Man…that is some dense shit.

  54. 54
    Mnemosyne says:

    GOP voters dislike McCaskill so much they’re not going to vote for her no matter what their nominee does.

    Yes, but does that automatically translate into a vote for Akin, or does that mean that GOP voters will vote third party, or skip that office on the ballot, or even stay home entirely?

    As Republicans know all too well, every third party or withheld vote for one candidate counts as a vote for the other candidate. That’s what they’re trying to avoid by pressuring Akin to withdraw.

  55. 55
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Shawn in ShowMe:

    it’s about the attitude of women, specifically in the over 35 demographic where Akin is clobbering McCaskill. These women have a lot of thinking to do.

    I’m not sure many of these women are capable of thought. Certainly not critical thinking, which is what you’re doing in your analysis.

    Some of them, I dare say most of them, agree with the basic misogynist slant of Akin. It’s all about those damn sluts, being wanton and defying the conventions that “proper women” follow.

    The authoritarian mindset is in place here, and it’s well adapted to not applying critical thinking skills, especially to core beliefs.

  56. 56
    lonesomerobot says:

    @Mnemosyne: What you’re probably going to see, if Akin stays in, is multiple write-in campaigns – for Talent, Steelman, etc.

    They will be poorly-coordinated and only dilute the (r) vote further, which is why I think McCaskill can win with 45%, perhaps even down to 40% – but only in these circumstances.

  57. 57
    The Moar You Know says:

    Whats with McCaskill’s comments that he still a nice guy, sincere and all that…Is she suicidal?

    @Smedley the uncertain: Just the opposite. He’s the only one that she has any chance against at all. She would like very much for him to stay in and is encouraging him to do so.

  58. 58
    NancyDarling says:

    @Grumpy Code Monkey: @Keith G: What Weiner did was stupid, but its immediate affect was just on the women directly involved. The number of women that Akin would harm with his neanderthal ideas is huge.

  59. 59
    Mr Stagger Lee says:

    @Shawn in ShowMe: Many of these women go to churches where they are told that THE MAN is the head of the household. Cross the man, you cross God, and flames of HEEEEELLLLLLL await the harlot who defies her husband.

  60. 60
  61. 61
    Nemesis says:

    @Nicole:

    On the bright side, if he drops out, unless the GOP cuts some sort of deal with him where he can decide to run for re-election to the House, come 2013, he’s out of Congress entirely

    .

    One can surmise this is what akin’s wife gets all up in his grille about. Read where she said unh-uh, we aint going nowhere cause re-electing my hubbie is “providential”, so the Big Guy is taking sides again.

  62. 62
    Amir Khalid says:

    Dunno if this has already been mentioned, but Politico has pulled a reporter from the Todd Akin beat for a tweet defending Akin.

  63. 63
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Some of them, I dare say most of them, agree with the basic misogynist slant of Akin. It’s all about those damn sluts, being wanton and defying the conventions that “proper women” follow.

    Sometimes all it takes is one woman to speak out to give others the courage to defy convention. And we’re not trying to desegregate the transportation system in the Jim Crow South, we just need 10% of women over 35 to change their minds about Todd Akin.

  64. 64

    If Akin doesn’t withdraw today, I predict a Republican operative will produce a forged withdrawal from the race at the 11th hour.

    This will buy some time for the GOP to say that the forged withdrawal was really signed by Akin.

    Of course, if Akin doesn’t go along, the drama goes up to another level.

  65. 65
    Linda Featheringill says:

    @Shawn in ShowMe: #62

    Sometimes all it takes is one woman to speak out to give others the courage to defy convention. And we’re not trying to desegregate the transportation system in the Jim Crow South, we just need 10% of women over 35 to change their minds about Todd Akin.

    Good point. How to find a few good women to speak out?

    BTW, I love the idea of write-ins. :-)

  66. 66
    Bobby Thomson says:

    Even if Akin waits to pull the plug until 9/25, they won’t have difficulty getting a court order to support it. The Democrats replaced Bob Torricelli with Frank Lautenberg on October 1, 2002, and for similar reasons.

    Generic Republican crushes McCaskill. Akin makes it closer but still wins by at least 3 points.

    McCaskill’s only hope is for voting in STL and KC to exceed 2008 levels. Unlikely.

  67. 67

    @lonesomerobot:

    What you’re probably going to see, if Akin stays in, is multiple write-in campaigns – for Talent, Steelman, etc.

    And if they don’t crop up spontaneously, it sounds like a great opportunity for the Democrats to pull a ratfuck.

  68. 68
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @lonesomerobot: No, Republicans are better disciplined than that, as they showed in Connecticut by electing Lieberman.

  69. 69

    @beltane:

    I’m not sure why Akin’s comments caused any sort of furor among establishment Republicans.

    This is the interesting angle.

    By Republicans freaking out and calling for Akin to step aside, the Republicans made this a much bigger story than it would have been… probably.

    It’s pretty rare that Republicans forcefully censure one of their own for drifting too far to the Right.

    Trent Lott got if for the Strom Thurmond comment. But how many others have said batshit crazy stuff and not gotten much attention?

    Is this the beginning of a fissure between “social conservatives” and the GOP establishment?

    Will it make Virgil Goode, the Constitution Party nominee, more attractive?

    I see the GOP as being in a very precarious position.

  70. 70

    @Carl Nyberg:

    If Akin doesn’t withdraw today, I predict a Republican operative will produce a forged withdrawal from the race at the 11th hour.

    I doubt they’re going to go that far, but you can bet there’s some very aggressive arm twisting, and probably some attempted bribery with wingnut welfare, going on behind the scenes today.

  71. 71
    Keith G says:

    @NancyDarling: What we are talking about is speech vs conduct. Akin said one the stupidest and most vile things (by a federal official) I have read in quite a while. Nonetheless all he did was to express an opinion. He should not be forced to resign from his current office for committing an act of free speech. I hope few here want to continue farther down the road of officially sanctioning individuals for what they think or how they communicate.

    That said, since choosing candidates to run for office is a legitimate party function, I have no problem with any political party working to disassociate itself from an incompatible candidate.

  72. 72
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @Amir Khalid: Et Tu Politico, et tu?

    Doesn’t Politico know their place is a neutral observer pushing the Republican’s line?

  73. 73
    1badbaba3 says:

    @lonesomerobot: Yes, let us not misunderestimate the likelyhood that Sister Sarah will go rogue bigfootin’ all over this thing.

    Good times. Good times.

  74. 74
    NancyDarling says:

    @Keith G: Akin has done considerably more than express his “opinion” with the shit he has tried to get through Congress.

    The argument could be made that what Weiner did was free speech, offensive as it was. I don’t think he ever did anything to any of those women other than share his photos and talk naughty.

    All of that said, as a woman I would prefer Weiner in Congress representing my interests, junk photos and all the rest, than a Reconstructionist/Dominionist straight out of Atwood’s “The Handmaid’s Tale.”

  75. 75
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @Carl Nyberg:

    Trent Lott got if for the Strom Thurmond comment.

    Trent Lott was like the Macca comment from what’s face – weeks of hammering from the left before the MSM took it up and the Republicans felt embarrassed enough to do something. I think the difference here is Romney, the man takes to the pillow forts every chance he gets.

    EDIT: Oh and I see the GOP wants to call for an anti-abortion amendment.

  76. 76
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Carl Nyberg:

    Akin’s problem is that he stated what these people actually believe in plain, uncoded language.

    You’re not supposed to come out and say it that baldly. You’re supposed to provide cover for the vermin of the Village to use their standard ‘both sides do it’ template.

    When you state it as baldly as Akin did, the Village has no cover.

    The same thing with the N word. If you use it, the Village can’t ignore it, and can’t provide cover if they want to maintain their “reasonable moderate” persona. They have to be outraged, which makes banter over the chafing dishes that much more strained.

  77. 77
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Keith G:

    Akin said one the stupidest and most vile things (by a federal official) I have read in quite a while. Nonetheless all he did was to express an opinion.

    Well, except for the whole part where Akin tried to pass a federal personhood law to ban all abortions nationwide, plus banning several forms of birth control.

    But, hey, I guess passing legislation that mostly hurts women is just free speech that shouldn’t be censored or condemned, amirite?

  78. 78
    Keith G says:

    @NancyDarling: In re Akin, then let the market place of politics deal with him. The things he has done/said might well be inexcusable, yet it seems as if those activities fall within the job description of an elected official.

    Weiner’s activities stick out as not rising to expected conduct of a public official. Then, he burned probably all his remaining bridges by lying to everyone, allies included. With every level of credibility emptied, Weiner inevitably withdrew.

  79. 79
    Mnemosyne says:

    @beltane:

    I’m not sure why Akin’s comments caused any sort of furor among establishment Republicans.

    As far as I can tell, Akin was the underdog in the Republican primary and Republicans in Missouri would love to be rid of him in favor of one of their establishment candidates.

    Plus there’s the whole “sponsoring personhood bills with Paul Ryan.” He’s too close to icky things that Ryan did in the House that the Republicans don’t want touched with a 10-foot pole. If they can kill Akin’s candidacy now, they think they can paper over Ryan’s extremist anti-abortion views.

  80. 80
    Robin G. says:

    I don’t think a snap poll really tells us that much. Let’s see what the three-day polling numbers say when they’re released later in the week.

  81. 81
    TG Chicago says:

    @Keith G: I see your point about Weiner’s lying. But Akin isn’t exactly being truthful here, either — trying to pretend this was a slip of the tongue or whatever.

    The core of Weiner’s offense was about his private behavior. Akin’s stupidity relates directly to public policy. I think voters should be far more troubled by a public official who is grotesquely ignorant about public policy issues than a public official who is stupid in his private life.

  82. 82
    Keith G says:

    @Mnemosyne: Don’t be a drama queen

    But, hey, I guess passing legislation that mostly hurts women is just free speech that shouldn’t be censored or condemned, amirite?

    A lot of stupid shit (sometimes hurtful and dangerous shit) gets introduced into a legislative body. Hey Mnen, It Did Not Get Passed.

    But I am glad it was introduced since it is some of the best ammo our side has in exposing their delusion filled politics. I want Obama to tie that lil piece of legislation around their neck in every swing state…(but will he?)

    Again, let the market place of ideas work.

    Oh, the ‘amirite’ schtick is a bit old. Jus’ saying.

  83. 83
    danimal says:

    Anyone else starting to think that the Republican convention is going to be one massive fustercluck of a p.r. disaster.

    I can hardly wait.

  84. 84
    Davis X. Machina says:

    I think this is a rare case of where Akin would be worse off running in a non-Presidential year election.

    There are a lot of people who will vote for him on a ‘What the hell, why not?’ basis to voting to throw out That Awful Negro’.

    Only 3-4% real independents, it’s essentially a referendum election, MO is now a red state — I think Akin survives, and wins.

  85. 85
    1badbaba3 says:

    @1badbaba3: …um, also too.

  86. 86
    danielx says:

    What could Todd Akin do to lose support of Republicans in the state?

    As they say here in Hoosierland, get caught in bed with a live man or dead woman.

  87. 87
    Brachiator says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    Democrats drove Anthony Weiner out for much less.

    Nonsense. Weiner was dumped because of despicable behavior.

    Akins is being blasted for reprehensible policies.

    Republicans rally round instead.

    Republicans are doing everything they can to dump this guy and distance themselves from him (even though his views are pretty much consistent with GOP policy preferences).

  88. 88
    RareSanity says:

    @Keith G:

    then let the market place of politics deal with him

    Isn’t that exactly what is happening?

    Or, are you arguing that a political party has no business engaging in the “market place (sic) of politics“?

    The political party, of which he is a member, is stating that they no longer wish for him to represent their party in the election. In that expression, they are also saying that they do not wish for him to benefit from the advantages that are afforded to him, because of his party affiliation.

    The only way for him to judged by the “political marketplace”, is for him to immediately, and publicly, renounce his membership to the Republican Party, and ask that he be listed has an independent on the ballot.

    It is perfectly within the rights of a political party, to remove someone they view as “incompatible”, from their membership. Or are you against the notion of free association?

    What you’re expressing sounds like some politically flavored libertarian crap, that has the same weaknesses of the various other flavors of libertarian crap.

    It always sounds good…until you actually try to apply it to the real world.

  89. 89

    Post-Akin, I propose a Sir Bedevere litmus test for all GOP candidates; just demonstrate a basic understanding and acceptance of general post-Enlightenment scientific knowledge.

    “This new learning amazes me Sir Bedevere. Explain again how sheep’s bladders may be employed to prevent earthquakes.”

    Going forward, we really need to do a better job of weeding out candidates inclined to go on television and spew medievalism all over themselves and the rest of the party.

    http://senatorjohnblutarsky.bl.....itmus.html

  90. 90
    Mike Lamb says:

    @Brachiator: Suggesting that there is “legitimate” vs. “illegitimate” rape; implying that if a baby is conceived, it means the woman really wanted it; etc. is not “despicable behavior”?

  91. 91
    Brachiator says:

    @Mike Lamb:

    Suggesting that there is “legitimate” vs. “illegitimate” rape; implying that if a baby is conceived, it means the woman really wanted it; etc. is not “despicable behavior”?

    No. “Suggesting” is not behavior.

    But Akin is thoroughly despicable.

  92. 92
    Grumpy Code Monkey says:

    @Keith G:

    Basically this.

    Weiner got the (completely deserved, IMO) shove because of something he did, not something he said. Yes, Akin’s attitude and opinions give troglodytes a bad name, but he should not be forced to resign from the race (or from office) simply for expressing them, or even modeling legislation from them. It’s the voters’ jobs to toss him on his ass for that. Consider it yet another clarifying moment in this election.

    If he stays in and manages to win, then save your ire for the people who voted for him. They’re the real problem, not Akin.

    Again, I wouldn’t call sending images of your schlong to women you don’t personally know something “less” than expressing a medieval opinion about rape.

  93. 93
    NancyDarling says:

    @Grumpy Code Monkey:

    Again, I wouldn’t call sending images of your schlong to women you don’t personally know something “less” than expressing a medieval opinion about rape.

    I guess understanding the difference is a “woman thing”.

  94. 94
    RareSanity says:

    @Grumpy Code Monkey:

    It’s the voters’ jobs to toss him on his ass for that.

    Nope.

    As long as he is a member of a political party, and benefits by taking advantage of the apparatus (mainly money, exposure and credibility) that the party has put in place, he has to answer to the people…and the party.

    If a politician doesn’t want to face the possibility of being forced out by a political party, or wants to only be beholden to their actual constituents, then don’t become a member of a political party. Get elected to office using only your own name, your own money, your own lawyers, consultants and accountants.

    If you use the party’s “stuff” to get elected, the party has the right to say, “We don’t want you anymore, GTFO!”

  95. 95
    Grumpy Code Monkey says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Hmmm, engaging in sexual harassment vs. executing your job and fulfilling the expectations of your constituents

    Nope, can’t tell the difference.

    Akin may have written horrible legislation, but writing legislation (horrible or not) is part of his job description, and he was put there by voters who wanted and expected him to write that horrible legislation. You don’t “censor” legislation, no matter how badly conceived; you vote on it.

    Sexting strange women is not part of any congresscritter’s job description, last I checked. I consider both Weiner’s and Akin’s behavior to be reprehensible, but Weiner crossed a line that Akin hasn’t AFAWK. Hence my and Keith’s irritation with Zandar’s line about Weiner “being driven out for less”.

    We always get the government we deserve, and we deserve it good and hard. The fact that any of these races are competitive should tell you more than you want to know about a lot of your fellow Murkians. Yes, Akin’s views are shared by most of the GOP and a sizable majority of Republican voters, and the only reason they’re pissed at him is that he expressed those views inarticulately (read: understandable to everyone without the secret decoder ring).

    Instead of demanding Akin drop out, GOTV for McCaskill. Beat the fuckers at the ballot box, then do it again, then do it again, and keep doing it until they go the way of the dodo.

  96. 96
    IOKIYAR(ight-wing) says:

    Republicans rape fantasies continue: “[Republican] Rep. Steve King: I’ve Never Heard Of A Girl Getting Pregnant From Statutory Rape Or Incest.”

    http://2012.talkingpointsmemo......y-rape.php

    Republicans: Fanatical ignorance in league with evil.

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