After refusing to withdraw from the Senate race in Missouri yesterday, Rep. Todd Akin went on Mike Huckabee’s radio show in an attempt to clarify his remarks about “legitimate rape.” As could be expected, Akin pulled out his trusty shovel and kept digging:
“You know, Dr. Willke has just released a statement and part of his letter, I think he just stated it very clearly. He said, of course Akin never used the word legitimate to refer to the rapist, but to false claims like those made in Roe v. Wade and I think that simplifies it….. There isn’t any legitimate rapist…. [I was] making the point that there were people who use false claims, like those that basically created Roe v. Wade.”
Got that, ladies? Just to review the Republican position, if you want contraception you’re a slut. If you want an abortion because you’ve been raped, you’re a liar. Because if you’ve been “legitimately raped,” you wouldn’t get pregnant.
Akin also released a letter of support from Dr. Willke:
“Missouri Republican Todd Akin’s troubled Senate campaign blasted out a letter of support Tuesday from the anti-abortion crusader who promoted the theory that victims of rape do not usually become pregnant.
“The pro-life movement and I unequivocally stand with Rep. Akin. How could we not?” Willke wrote in the letter. “Rep. Akin will make the U.S. Senate a safer place for the most vulnerable in our nation.
“It’s time for Republican leaders to rise to the level of Rep. Akin’s principle and courage and stand with him and the Republican platform that stands for the protection of every human life.”
Willke and his wife, Barbara, are leading anti-abortion advocates. Their book, first published in 1971, asserts that “assault rape” rarely results in pregnancy because the assault traumatizes the woman and makes her body less habitable.
…”This goes back 30 and 40 years. When a woman is assaulted and raped, there’s a tremendous amount of emotional upset within her body,” Willke said, adding that this trauma “can radically upset her possibility of ovulation, fertilization, implantation and even nurturing of a pregnancy.”
Willke’s theory on the influence of stress on ovulation is not his alone. In 1988, Rep. Stephen Freind (R-Delaware) made similar claims based on a study by Dr. Fred Mecklenberg:.
“In a 1972 article prepared for a publication called Abortion and Social Justice, which was paid for by a group called Americans United for Life, Mecklenburg said “medical research” linked stress and ovulation. Mecklenburg is an obstetrician and gynecologist working in Washington.
“In Germany, during World War II, the Nazis tested this hypothesis by selecting women who were about to ovulate and sending them to the gas chambers, only to bring them back after their realistic mock-killing, to see what effects this had on their ovulatory patterns,” Mecklenburg wrote. According to the study, wrote Mecklenburg, 64 percent did not ovulate.”