'God Intended' Pregnancies From Rape, Richard Mourdock Says
Mourdock is currently the state treasurer and backed by the Tea Party. He was debating Rep. Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.) and Libertarian Andrew Horning. The candidates were asked to explain their views on abortion, to which all three said they were anti-abortion.
“The only exception I have to have an abortion is in the case of the life of the mother,” Mourdock said. “I struggled with it myself for a long time, but I came to realize life is that gift from God. I think that even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that is something that God intended to happen.”
Donnelly released a statement in response, saying: "I think rape is a heinous and violent crime in every instance. The God I believe in and the God I know most Hoosiers believe in, does not intend for rape to happen -- ever. What Mr. Mourdock said is shocking, and it is stunning that he would be so disrespectful to survivors of rape."
Mourdock attempted to clarify his comments soon after the debate, The Huffington Post reported, saying God doesn’t intend sexual assaults.
"God creates life, and that was my point," Mourdock said in a statement. "God does not want rape, and by no means was I suggesting that He does. Rape is a horrible thing, and for anyone to twist my words otherwise is absurd and sick."
National Democrats compared Mourdock to Missouri Republican Senate candidate Todd Akin, Indiana Public Media reported. Akin said women’s bodies have a way of preventing pregnancy in cases of “legitimate rape.”
A spokesman for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee also responded to the comments.
"Richard Mourdock's disturbing comment about rape is a window into Mourdock's extreme view of the world," spokesman Shripal Shah said. "Indiana can't afford to send a self-proclaimed 'zealot' and Tea Partier like Richard Mourdock to the Senate.”
Mitt Romney has endorsed Mourdock and supports him in a campaign ad that began running in Indiana on Tuesday, The Huffington Post reported. A Romney campaign spokeswoman said the Republican presidential nominee took issue with Mourdock’s comments.
“Gov. Romney disagrees with Richard Mourdock’s comments, and they do not reflect his views,” Andrea Saul said.
Reach Executive Producer Agnus Dei Farrant here.