HELENA — Montana Democratic U.S. House candidate Kim Gillan and national Democratic officials this week criticized Republican Steve Daines for not strongly condemning remarks made Sunday by a Missouri U.S. Senate candidate about abortion and rape.
Daines, however, said Wednesday there should be no confusion about where he stands on the comments by Missouri Republican Todd Akin, calling them “offensive.”
“I’m a husband of 26 years and a father of two daughters, and I found those remarks to be extremely offensive,” he said.
Daines also noted that Republican Party officials have withdrawn their support for Akin, in his race against Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo.
Akin, who was explaining to a TV reporter his position that abortion should be outlawed even when the woman is pregnant from a rapist, said if it’s a “legitimate rape,” the female body has ways to reject the pregnancy.
He later took back his comments and apologized.
All major Montana Republican candidates on Monday denounced Akin’s comments, although Daines spoke only through his campaign manager, saying he “strongly disagreed” with Akin.
Gillan and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee said while Daines may condemn Akin’s comments, his position on abortion is the same as Akin’s: That it should still be outlawed in cases where the woman was raped.
“I believe (Daines’) position is out of step with Montana values,” Gillan said Wednesday.
Daines noted that his position is the same as the national Republican Party’s platform: That abortion should be legal only to save the life of the mother.