“Watch your mouth”
Words that my father and mother always used to speak (or shout) when one of us kids’ vocabulary wandered into “off color” territory.
“Think before you speak.”
Words of wisdom, to guard against putting one’s foot in one’s mouth…..
Those words should also apply to political candidates.
Todd Akin should have, this past weekend, at least ordered his thoughts before speaking. His remarks were out of line, and completely ill-informed. When one wishes to speak on a subject, one should had least have some knowledge of that subject.
Unfortunately, knowledge escaped Mr. Akin.
Once remarks like his hit the airwaves, no explanation, no matter how reasonable, or, truthful, is going to bring those words back, nor change the interpreted meaning. Note that I said “interpreted meaning”. In many cases, especially things said during a political campaign, people here what they want, as opposed to what is being said. Akin’s remarks just fed into the “war on women” narrative, being waged by Left. However, in his case, his remarks needed little interpretation.
What Mr. Akin should have said, in response to that reporter’s question was: “I am pro-life. Next question please”, or, “That’s a decision between a woman and her doctor, abortion in the case of rape, incest should be on a case by case basis” The first response would have put the the Left in to it’s usual response mode, decrying all Republicans as “anti-woman” and etc. But, at least the answer would have been un-ambiguous, and pretty much benign, and therefore, of limited value to the pro abortion crowd. The second response would have gotten a negative reaction from many pro-lifers, but, since it is such a touchy issue, the response would have been muddled at best, and not approaching “outrage” levels.
Unfortunately, Mr. Akin did neither. He said something, that in his mind probably sounded reasonable and well thought out. After he spoke, it sounded so off key, and out of line, it couldn’t help but garner the reaction that it did.
So, now, amid calls for Mr. Akin to step down, this campaign has become has now become about abortion, and women’s rights. Mr. Akin has just handed the Democrats something to run with, something they will use to overshadow the economic issues that are the most important thing going on right now.
“See, Republicans HATE women.”
I can hear it now. There is nothing like using a moral/social issue to trump the economic ones that Romney has been beating up Barack Obama with over the last week. Especially one that inflames passions on both sides. The Romney campaign, in an move that absolutely reeked of wisdom, condemned Mr. Akin’s remarks, and moved on, thereby distancing themselves from the problem. For if Romeny were to embroil his campaign in this Missouri Mis-step(right into it) it would have completely taken the focus off of the major issues, and focused it completely on a sideshow. The Obama campaign, however, would love the focus to stay right there, because it plays into their hands, and they can get a ton of mileage out of this and the “war on women”. They can use it to steer the narrative, and keep it, (and voter’s minds) off the economic, energy, and employment issues that are really the central issues.
Mr. Akin, please step down.
Seriously. It’s time to go. We need the focus off of you, and on the economy. You are not showing “courage and determination” by staying in the race, you are showing that you don’t get what you said, and how much damage it has done.
In a sane world, explaining what you really meant, along with an apology probably would have cleared things up for some people However, this is not a sane world. This is politics.
A presidential election year, no less.
Something like this has consequences, especially when the stakes are this high.
Sorry, Mr. Akin, but, really, it’s time to go.