Yesterday Monday I noted that Todd Akin’s recent outrageous public statements were just par for the course for Akin over the past few years – at least to those of us who’ve bothered to pay attention. And lo and behold, today Slate‘s Amanda Marcotte managed to dig up some CSPAN videos of a few of Todd’s golden oldies, a couple of speeches from among those he delivered on the House floor over the past few years (and I absolutely know that there are more out there).
Akin holds forth in the earlier (2005) of the speeches caught on the videos on the evils of stem cell research, which, Marcotte notes, he seems to think will result in harvesting organs from living humans grown for the purpose. I kid you not!
It is the related topic of abortion, though, where Akin has the most potential to do immediate harm. And it is in this 2008 speech that Todd reveals that what he lacks in information he makes up for with his imagination. It employs so many of the favorite, paranoid metaphors of the right, slavery, terrorism, etc., that it must be savored in its entirety:
Apart from characterizing doctors who perform abortions as terrorists, the funniest part is when he feels free to wax eloquent on aspects of abortion about which he clearly knows nothing:
Who wants to be at the very bottom of the food chain of medical profession? And what sort of places do these bottom-of-the-food-chain doctors work in? Places that are really a pit. You find that along with the culture of death go all kinds of other law-breaking: not following good sanitary procedure, giving abortions to women who are not actually pregnant, cheating on taxes, all these kinds of things, misuse of anesthetics so that people die or almost die.
You read that right: Todd thinks that abortion doctors routinely give abortions to women who aren’t pregnant! As Marcotte notes:
It is clearly lost on Akin that the image he’s invoking – of dirty clinics that operate illegally and misuse pain medication – is the reality he’s trying to create. He wants to ban abortion, which is a surefire way to get a whole bunch of illegal, underground clinics that aren’t held accountable to standard medical practice. If you want clean, safe abortion, you need it to be legal.
It also helps if the clinic is not barricaded by a bunch of hysterical anti-abortion freaks – like those with whom Brother Todd was arrested twenty-five years ago. Of course, folks like Akin don’t really want clean, safe abortion. They want the Jezebels who have abortions to suffer and then suffer some more. How else will you ever keep the harlots under control?
P.S. After reading this, you may marvel that Senator Roy Blunt and ex-Senators Kit Bond and Jim Talent have decided that they can turn a blind eye to Akin’s unseemliness. They’ve all announced that no matter how far his foot is jammed down his throat, he’s their boy. It’s hard to see what Bond and Talent have got to gain from this aside from kudos for putting party first, but for Blunt, who is already clawing his way up in the Senate GOP hierarchy, it’s got to be very, very important that the GOP retain control of the chamber. One can only hope that in return for their cynical gesture, they all end up appropriately besmeared.