Paul Ryan attempts to distance self from Akin's rape remarks
Post by Emily Mills on 8/23/2012 9:36am
Newly dubbed vice presidential nominee Rep. Paul Ryan attempted to distance himself from controversial remarks made by fellow Republican Rep. Todd Akin in an interview with the CBS affiliate in Pittsburgh on Monday.
The congressman from Janesville, Wisconsin pushed back against a question from the interviewer about legislation he sponsored that included the language "forcible rape," by saying, "Rape is rape. Rape is rape, period. End of story."
When asked if he thought abortions should be available to women who are raped, Ryan side-stepped, responding, "Well, look, I’m proud of my pro-life record. And I stand by my pro-life record in Congress. It’s something I’m proud of. But Mitt Romney is the top of the ticket and Mitt Romney will be president and he will set the policy of the Romney administration."
Mitt Romney has said that he would allow for exceptions in cases of rape and incest, despite the recently adopted official Republican Party platform that calls for an outright ban on abortions, without exceptions.
Ryan has co-sponsored and voted for a long list of anti-choice legislation during his time in the U.S. Congress, including the Protect Life Act of 2011 that would allow hospitals to refuse to "participate in" or "provide referrals" for abortions, even if the woman's life was in immediate danger.
On Tuesday Missouri state Rep. Akin refused to heed calls from within his own party to resign from the race for U.S. Senate after comments he made the week before caused outrage nationwide. When asked what he thought about allowing for abortions for pregnancies resulting from rape, Akin claimed that in cases of "legitimate rape" he thought that "the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down."
The interviewer went on to ask Ryan what he thought about President Obama's claim that a Romney-Ryan administration would restrict women's access to birth control.
"Nobody is proposing to deny birth control to anybody," Ryan responded. “And I don’t think [women] are going to take the bait of all these distractions that the President is trying to throw at them."
Emily Mills is Editor-At-Large for Dane101, as well as Editor of Our Lives Magazine. She is also a freelance writer, photographer, actor, and musician (drummer and singer in local band Little Red Wolf). Originally from several states up and down the Midwest Emily has called Madison home since 2000. Contact her at