Embattled Missouri Representative Todd Akin began the day apologizing. By sundown, after the deadline had passed for Akin to withdraw from the Missouri senate race, he was lashing out at Mitt Romney and the one group that may want him to stay in politics more than anyone. Akin posted a larger banner on his Facebook page with "I'm pro life and I stand with Todd Akin" and an apology sandwiching a call to sign a new petition titled, "Tell the Liberal Elitist Media That You're Standing With Todd Akin!"
Pundits, media folks, radio hosts, and politicians of every political affiliation have pointed out what buffoonish and regrettably ignorant remarks Akin made about rape, and have called on him to bow out of the race. While the "Liberal Elitist Media" may be disgusted by Akin's comments, from a strategic standpoint, they aren't sorry that he's revived talk of the GOP's "war on women."
Very non-liberal media outlets and individuals have called on Akin to bow out of the race, including: Sean Hannity, the National Review, The Wall Street Journal, Mitt Romney, Missouri Senator Roy Blunt and several former Missouri senators, Charles Krauthammer, Scott Walker, Karl Rove, Scott Brown, chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee John Cornyn, Kermit the Frog ... still there? So he's using "liberal elites" as a punching bag, not wanting to make enemies on his own side.
Or is he so inclined?
During an appearance on Sean Hannity's radio show Tuesday, the congressman remarked on Mitt Romney's (delayed) call to exit the Senate race, saying, “Don’t you think he may have built this thing up and made a bigger deal about it than he needed to?” He added, according to Politico, “Why couldn’t he run his race and I’ll run mine?”
As for the other element of Akin's defense: In the first version of Akin's petition, to the right of the mission statement, "Tell McCaskill That Your Standing With Todd Akin!"*, an image of a fetus appeared in the upper right corner of the page over Akin's right shoulder. The image has since been removed.
*That's right — the banner initially read "your" before someone corrected it, Talking Points Memo points out.