Indiana Â Republican Senate candidateÂ Richard MourdockÂ saidÂ pregnancies resulting from rape are part of Godâ€™s plan, tearfully explaining that he only supports abortions when a motherâ€™s life is in danger.
â€œI think even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen,â€ Mourdock said during Tuesdayâ€™s Senate debate, choking up. Mourdockâ€™s opponent, Democratic Rep. Joe Donnelly, opposes abortion except in cases of rape and incest.
After the debate, Mourdock further explained his comment.
â€œAre you trying to suggest somehow that God preordained rape, no I donâ€™t think that,â€ said Mourdock, according to The Associated Press. â€œAnyone who would suggest that is just sick and twisted. No, thatâ€™s not even close to what I said.â€
Democrats wasted no time linkingÂ GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney to Mourdock. Earlier this week, RomneyÂ personally appeared in a TV adÂ for the Indiana state treasurer, offering his endorsement.
â€œRichard Mourdockâ€™s rape comments are outrageous and demeaning to women. Unfortunately, theyâ€™ve become part and parcel of the modern Republican Partyâ€™s platform toward womenâ€™s health, as Congressional Republicans like Paul Ryan have worked to outlaw all abortions and even narrow the definition of rape,â€ Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz said in a statement released to press.
â€œAs Mourdockâ€™s most prominent booster and the star of Mourdockâ€™s current campaign ads, Mitt Romney should immediately denounce these comments and request that the ad featuring him speaking directly to camera on Mourdockâ€™s behalf be taken off the air,â€ she added
â€œMittâ€™s man Mourdock apes Akin, reflecting a GOP that is way out of mainstream,â€ Obama strategist David Axelrod tweeted.
Romneyâ€™s campaign distanced itself from Mourdockâ€™s comment.
â€œGov. Romney disagrees with Richard Mourdockâ€™s comments, and they do not reflect his views,â€ campaign spokeswoman Andrea Saul said.
Abortion has become a more prominent issue in the presidential campaign in recent weeks, as Mitt Romney told the Des Moines Register that he would not pursue any specific abortion legislation as president and began airing aÂ new TV adÂ in which a woman touts Romneyâ€™s support for abortions in cases of rape and incestâ€“a difference of opinion between Romney and his running mate, Paul Ryan.
The Obama campaign hit Romney on abortion soon after,Â releasing a TV ad of its ownÂ that features footage from a 2007 GOP presidential primary debate in which Romney said he would be â€œdelightedâ€ to sign a bill banning all abortions in the U.S.
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