The National Republican Congressional Committee may want to consider sensitivity tutorials, or the gender gap favoring Democrats could get even larger.
The 2014 midterm campaigns are upon us, and that means we are most likely going to get more soundbites containing Republican ignorance about reproductive rights, or even about basic anatomy.
Let’s explore a few examples of some of the strangest, craziest and most outrageous statements made by Republicans about women and contraception. There are many.
Mike ‘Their Libido’ Huckabee
If there was one thing Republicans up for re-election this year didn’t need was former (and perhaps future) presidential candidate Mike Huckabee making another blunder on women. Nevertheless, the former Arkansas governor on Thursday gave Democrats all the more reason to continue asserting their message that the GOP is waging a “war on women.”
From Huckabee’s point of view, women don’t need to depend on government for birth control. All they have to do is learn to control their burning desires.
“If the Democrats want to insult the women of America by making them believe that they are helpless without Uncle Sugar coming in and providing for them a prescription each month for birth control because they cannot control their libido or their reproductive system without the help of the government, then so be it. Let us take that discussion all across America, because women are far more than the Democrats have played them to be.”
If that isn’t bad enough, as a side note, Huckabee also believes wives should submit “graciously” to their husbands.
Todd ‘She Can Shut Down Legitimate Rape’ Akin
If rape by itself isn’t bad enough, Akin, then a congressman and Republican Senate nominee in Missouri, found himself in an awkward position in 2012 when he tried to explain his stance on abortion and instances of “legitimate rape.”
“It seems to me, from what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare,” Akin told the media of pregnancies resulting from rape. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. But let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work or something: I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be of the rapist, and not attacking the child.”
Rush ‘It Makes Her A Slut’ Limbaugh
Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh is not a candidate, but he's considered the voice of a large section of the Republican Party. He was at the center of heated debate about President Barack Obama’s contraception mandate in 2012. That was the year Limbaugh insulted Sandra Fluke, then a Georgetown law student who was denied the right to speak before a congressional panel about the issue, on air. He didn’t even get her name right.
“What does it say about the college co-ed Susan [sic] Fluke, who goes before a congressional committee and essentially says that she must be paid to have sex? What does that make her? It makes her a slut, right? It makes her a prostitute. She wants to be paid to have sex.”
Limbaugh didn’t stop there. In fact, he said if Fluke was having so much sex then that makes him and other taxpayers “pimps.” And because pimps demand payment, he wanted “something in return. The videos of all this sex posted online so we can see what we are getting for our money.”
Rep. Chris ‘Let’s Redefine Rape’ Smith
In 2011, Rep. Chris Smith of New Jersey introduced the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act” to permanently stop federal funding for abortions. Critics had a problem with this because the legislation would allow coverage for such procedures only in cases of “forcible” rape. Some women Democratic lawmakers like Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida called the proposal “a violent act against women.”
Richard ‘God Intended It’ Mourdock
GOP Indiana Senate candidate Richard Mourdock stunned many when he said a pregnancy resulting from rape is God’s intention. Mourdock, who was tea party-backed, made these comments during a debate in October 2012 when asked if abortion should be allowed in cases of rape and incest.
“I think even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen.”
Mourdock later clarified that he wasn’t suggesting that God wanted rape to happen but that He is the creator of life.
Laura is a U.S. politics reporter for the International Business Times. She was always fascinated by the BBC World News each morning on the radio in Jamaica. That, and a love...