A “Legitimate” Rape… Mike Huckabee’s Lifeline to Akin Screws Republicans
Governor Mike Huckabee not only gave Todd Akin cover with his supportive email yesterday, he also was able to screw Republican candidates across the nation.
Steve Kornacki at Salon reported:
It’s still very possible that Todd Akin won’t be running for the Senate this fall. He still has a month to leave the race and be replaced by a new candidate, provided he can secure approval from a Missouri court — something that would probably be a formality. He’d also have to pay for the printing of new ballots, another technicality that wouldn’t stand in the way of him exiting, if that’s what he wants.
In other words, Republicans still have good reason to try to isolate Akin, denying him political and financial support and separating themselves from him publicly with the hope that he’ll eventually conclude he’s on a doomed mission. This is why what Mike Huckabee did yesterday afternoon is so unhelpful to his party.
The former Arkansas governor and presidential candidate weighed in with a fiery defense of Akin and a call for pro-life Republicans to defy party leaders and their “sleazy” efforts to force Akin out and “feed his body to the hungry liberal wolves.”
The question of why Huckabee would do this isn’t that hard to figure. For one thing, he was the most (only?) prominent Republican to back Akin in Missouri’s GOP primary earlier this month, a race that Akin won in an upset. Both men are also closely aligned with the Christian right and place an unusual emphasis on moral and cultural issues. Huckabee’s statement, which bemoans that “money has changed hands to push [Akin] off the plank,” also speaks to the grudges that he nurses from his 2008 White House campaign, which he believes was undermined by his party’s professional class and financial elite.
But his strong affirmation of support provides Akin with a crucial lifeline. For one thing, Akin now has a major national Republican leader willing to stand with him and fight back against the party’s isolation campaign. Perhaps more important, Huckabee could also help Akin rake in small donations from rank-and-file Christian.
I never thought I’s say this but Salon nailed it.
Barack Obama now leads in Missouri 47-46 and plans on running ads starting next week in a state that was lost to Democrats one week ago.