Mitt Romney: Akin should leave the Senate race in Missouri


Missouri Rep. Todd Akin defended his no-exceptions abortion policy by saying "legitimate rape" rarely causes pregnancy.


Photograph of Todd Akin from his Facebook page.

A defiant Todd Akin is staying in the US Senate race despite Mitt Romney's call on Tuesday that he drop out, ABC News reported.

The Missouri Republican, who is facing a growing backlash over his remarks that women’s bodies can prevent pregnancies in cases of “legitimate rape,” went on radio this afternoon to say he will continue to campaign for a Senate seat, CBS News reported.

"I haven't done anything morally or ethically wrong," Akin told former Republican presidential candidate-turned radio host Mike Huckabee.

But Romney called Akin's remarks "offensive and wrong" and said he should leave the race.

“As I said yesterday, Todd Akin’s comments were offensive and wrong and he should very seriously consider what course would be in the best interest of our country,” Romney said in a statement. “Today, his fellow Missourians urged him to step aside, and I think he should accept their counsel and exit the Senate race.”

Romney had previously blasted Akin's comments but stopped short of saying he should drop his Senate bid.

Akin, who strongly opposes abortion, said the response to his remarks during a television interview on Sunday "does seem like a little bit of an overreaction."

More from GlobalPost: Rep. Todd Akin: "legitimate rape" rarely causes pregnancy

"We are going to continue this race for the US Senate.

"We believe taking this stand is going to strengthen our country, going to strengthen, ultimately, the Republican Party."

The Associated Press said high-ranking members of the Republican Party have urged Akin to step aside – advice he has hitherto ignored.

The six-term congressman released an apology video on Monday night, saying he had made a “very, very serious error.”

More from GlobalPost: Todd Akin releases apology video

Akin has until 5 p.m. today to withdraw from the race. If he misses the deadline, the Republicans will need a court order to remove his name from the ballot.




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