CNSNews.com editor in chief recognizes that Todd Akin's statements on rape and pregnancy undercut the absolutist right-wing argument that abortion should be outlawed in all instances, including in cases of rape. So his Aug. 22 column is devoting to parsing Akin's remarks to disassociate that claim from the rest of what he said:
Akin's answer had two distinct parts. In the first, he made a claim about the physiological likelihood of a rape victim conceiving a child as the result of the criminal act committed against her. In the second, he made a policy statement about whether aborting such a child ought to be permitted.
The first part of Akin's answer was worse than gratuitous. It made a claim he could not back up and did so in language that itself raised questions.
But what about the second part of Akin's statement — that rapists ought to be punished but not children conceived through rape?
Is this a logical, morally defensible, even laudable and courageous position?
Needless to say, Jeffrey insists it is, and also that Mitt Romney believes the same thing, even though he has never explicitly said so and has actually denied the position in criticizing Akin:
Given Romney's premises, what would be the logical position for Romney to take on whether American law should permit the taking of an innocent human life conceived through a rape?
"Gov. Romney and Congressman Ryan disagree with Mr. Akin's statement, and a Romney-Ryan administration would not oppose abortion in instances of rape," Romney campaign spokeswoman Amanda Henneberg told multiple news organizations on Monday.
This has been Romney's position ever since he declared himself pro-life. "I am pro-life," Romney wrote in a July 26, 2005, op-ed in the Boston Globe. "I believe that abortion is the wrong choice except in cases of incest, rape and to save the life of the mother."
So, if abortion is not the "wrong choice" in cases of rape, what kind of choice is it?
Who exactly benefits when the government permits the deliberate killing of an innocent child conceived through rape?
Like WorldNetDaily's Joseph Farah, Jeffrey wants to change the subject away from Akin and insist his larger point was accurate:
Rep. Todd Akin's substantive position that we should protect the right to life even of those conceived through rape — who are themselves a second victim of that evil act — is not only in keeping with the good heart of America, it is plain and simply right.
By the way, Jeffrey's "worse than gratuitous" statement was his only criticism of Akin.