Remember radio personality and political commentator Rush Limbaugh's "Operation Chaos," an appeal for Republican voters to cross over and cast Democratic ballots for Hillary Clinton in the 2008 primary elections?
Well, Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill learned something from that effort, and speculation is she and her supporters did what they could to encourage Missouri Republicans to vote for Congressman Todd Akin in his primary election battle with John Brunner and Sarah Steelman. Pundits believe McCaskill preferred to meet Akin in the Senate race.
Now that they have what they wished for, their confidence in Akin as a weak candidate seems to be paying off.
Open mouth, ...
Akin gave a terrible -- at best, highly controversial -- answer to a question about his stance on abortion in a rape case: "If it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down," preventing the unwanted pregnancy. It was his opinion that pregnancy from rape was "really rare."
Republicans fear the insensitive remarks will cost them the opportunity to defeat McCaskill in the November election.
Akin's subsequent clarifications -- including a video apology and his comments that he had used the wrong words in the wrong way -- haven't helped; except with his true believers, he continues to lose support and traction.
You're in pretty bad shape when you've been encouraged to withdraw by GOP leaders including presidential candidate Mitt Romney; vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan; Missouri Senator Roy Blunt; former Missouri Senators John Ashcroft, Kit Bond, Jack Danforth, and Jim Talent; Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell; Sarah Palin; the National Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee; major GOP fundraisers; and some guy who operates a marina near Gravois Mills, MO.
'A very low bar'
On Wednesday's "Red Eye with Greg Guttfeld," panelist Michael Moynihan shyly expressed his muted opinions that Akin was a "dumb-ass," "a complete, incoherent idiot," and was "beyond being a moron and a halfwit." Moynihan said, "This guy is the dumbest man in American politics, and this is a very low bar."
"It's also a lot for the Missouri Republican Party to vet people on whether they think there's a legitimate form of rape," Moynihan said. "Is that on the checklist? What are your views on rape? You're against, right?"
Other panelists piled on, calling Akin a liar who doesn't understand basic biology:
"The Missouri Republican Party should have said this guy is such a moron that [the Democrats] are giving him money. They found someone worse than McCaskill, and she's pretty bad."
"When you hear someone say something this stupid, your first thought is, 'This is not the first stupid thing he's said.' Something this idiotic, you think it is part of a pattern."
And, "You know that you're in the wrong business when you have to address the camera and say rape is evil."
Right. You never want to be in a position where the key statement is, as one panelist put it, "I need to clarify my position on RAPE."
Akin refused to bow out of the race.