Santorum, DeMint go all in with Todd Akin

Updated
 
Missouri Republican Senate candidate, Rep. Todd Akin, R-Mo., speaks while surrounded by supporters during a news conference at the start of a statewide bus tour, Tuesday, September 25, 2012, in St. Louis.
Missouri Republican Senate candidate, Rep. Todd Akin, R-Mo., speaks while surrounded by supporters during a news conference at the start of a statewide bus tour, Tuesday, September 25, 2012, in St. Louis.
Jeff Roberson / AP

Republicans Rick Santorum and Sen. Jim DeMint of South Carolina are backing Todd Akin’s Senate race in Missouri despite senior party leadership deserting the controversial candidate.

Just last month Reince Priebus, the chair of the Republican National Committee, fretted that Akin could cost the GOP a majority in the Senate if he didn’t step aside following his outlandish comments on rape. Party leaders called on him to remove himself from the race and the Romney-Ryan GOP presidential ticket also sought to distance itself from Akin.

Akin’s downfall began when he responded with an interesting theory when asked by an interviewer last month whether abortion should be legal in cases of rape.

“From what I understand from doctors that’s really rare,” Akin said. “If it’s a legitimate rape, uh, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”

Akin confirmed he would stay in the race once again yesterday.

 

Both Santorum, a former GOP presidential candidate, and DeMint have hinted of their support for Akin in the past. DeMint said he might provide financial support to Akin’s race as recently as a few days ago. While Santorum initially called Akin’s comments “ridiculous,” he had also defended the Missourian as a “good man” during the height of the controversy.

Santorum and DeMint called Akin a “principled conservative” in a joint statement released Wednesday in which they spent significant text on discussing why incumbent Sen. Claire McCaskill must be defeated.

Democrats currently hold a narrow majority in the Senate and are seeking to bolster that position by picking up additional seats in the fall.

Full statement:

If Republicans are to win back the Senate and stop President Obama’s liberal agenda, we must defeat Senator Claire McCaskill in Missouri. Her support of President Obama’s job-killing, big-spending policies are sending our country into an economic abyss.  And her passionate support of ObamaCare is ensuring healthcare costs go up while quality of care goes down.  Simply put, we cannot afford six more years of Senator McCaskill. Todd Akin is a principled conservative who is committed to winning and fighting for freedom in the U.S. Senate. Todd will work to stop reckless spending, stop the out of control debt, repeal the government takeover of healthcare, support our military and defend life at every stage. We support Todd Akin and hope freedom-loving Americans in Missouri and around the country will join us so we can save our country from fiscal collapse.

Todd Akin, Jim DeMint and Rick Santorum

Santorum, DeMint go all in with Todd Akin

Updated