McCaskill's Campaign Fund Breaks Record; Akin Doubles Down On Abortion Claim | St. Louis Public Radio

McCaskill's Campaign Fund Breaks Record; Akin Doubles Down On Abortion Claim

Oct 3, 2012

Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill says she raised about $5.8 million for her re-election campaign over the past three months.

McCaskill, who's being challenged by Republican congressman Todd Akin, said today her total is the most money ever raised by a Missouri Senate candidate for this quarter.

Candidates are not required to file their quarterly campaign finance reports until Oct. 15. Akin has not yet released his.

McCaskill's fundraising haul came during a period in which Akin was under intense criticism for a remark he made about women's bodies having ways of averting pregnancy in what he called "legitimate rape."

Akin is holding a series of fundraisers today in Washington.

McCaskill has spent the past two days in New York raising campaign funds.

Meanwhile, a video from 2008 has made the rounds on the Internet, featuring Todd Akin once again discussing abortion. In this video, he compares abortion to terrorism, saying “We have terrorists in our own cultures called abortionists.”

In the video, the Congressman that sits on the House Committee for Science, Space and Technology claims it is common practice for abortion providers to give “abortions to women who are not actually pregnant.”

On Wednesday, the Akin campaign doubled-down on that comment, releasing a statement from a former director of a Planned Parenthood clinic in Texas. Abby Johnson quit the clinic in 2009 and now speaks out against abortion.

“I can attest that when I served as director of Planned Parenthood in Bryan, Texas, we often scared women into getting services they did not need - including abortion - so we could collect the fees," Johnson said in a written statement.

"This included women who were not pregnant and women who were in the process of miscarrying. Anyone that would attack Congressman Todd Akin for his factual comments on the House floor in 2008 are misguided at best."

But Planned Parenthood takes exception to that claim. As the Associated Press reports:

A Planned Parenthood spokeswoman in Missouri said Wednesday that Akin's assertion was absurd and that its clinics never perform abortions on women who aren't pregnant.

"That's just an absolutely ridiculous claim," said Planned Parenthood spokeswoman Michelle Trupiano. It "just goes to show how extreme Todd Akin is, and he's not in touch with what happens in women's lives."

Akin's comments were made on Jan. 22, 2008, as anti-abortion lawmakers spoke on the House floor on the anniversary of the 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling that women had a legal right to abortion.

Follow Chris McDaniel on Twitter@csmcdaniel

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