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Akin On ‘Dog’ Comment: Everybody Knew What I Meant

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

The U.S. Senate race in Missouri has drawn national attention with Republican Congressman Todd Akin vying to unseat Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill. Most recently, Akin garnered national ire for saying McCaskill is like a dog that fetches taxes and regulations from D.C. and brings them back to Missouri.

Akin defended that analogy on Monday.

Akin is no stranger to the national spotlight, drawing criticism and exposure after his statement that pregnancies from “legitimate rape” are very rare.

In spite of these statements, the race remains contentious. In a wide ranging interview on St. Louis Public Radio’s talk/call-in program, “St. Louis on the Air,” Akin said the campaign is a tremendous amount of work but is also very encouraging.

“There is a sense of urgency on the street and a real desire to see America return to a condition where we’re a lot more free and not completely burdened with the weight of government,” Akin said.

Akin said any attention to those statements is just a distraction. But Akin defended those statements on “St. Louis on the Air,” saying “everybody knew what I was talking about.”

Akin said his point was what “McCaskill has done over the last four years is a record of taxes, regulation, bureaucracy, and absolutely failed promises judged by their own words. The people of this state don’t want that kind of legislation, they don’t want the taxes and big government programs…and dumping it here in the state of Missouri,” Akin said.

Akin pointed to McCaskill being a deciding vote in passing President Obama’s health care law, a law, he says 71 percent of Missourians didn’t want.

Pressed further, Akin said, “This is what I said was going to happen in the last debate we had. You’re going to see distractions, anything to get away from the Obama / McCaskill record.” “So you use the wrong word in terms of fetching something, okay, maybe you could use something else, but everybody knew what I was talking about,” said Akin. “There wasn’t anything complicated about that nor was there anything that was meant that was harmful, it was simply explaining about her record.”

While Akin maintains media attention about some of his rhetoric is a distraction from major issues, Rick Tyler, a senior campaign advisor is sending a mixed message. Shortly after the interview, Tyler tweeted “If McCaskill were a dog she’d be a ‘Bullshitsu.’” Tyler later tweeted a photo of a dog, though mentioned it was a joke.

A listener named Doug wrote an email asking, “As a gay man who is legally married to my husband according to the laws of the state of Connecticut and as an ordained clergy person, why should I vote for you?”

Akin responded, “If you’re going to vote on the gay issue, you probably shouldn’t vote for me. On the other hand, if you care about the future of our country, if you care about the economy, if the dollar bill even works or if we go into a massive depression, then it might be something different.”

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Alex is the executive producer of "St. Louis on the Air" at St. Louis Public Radio.
Mary Edwards came to St. Louis Public Radio in 1974, just after finishing her Bachelor of Music degree at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. She has served the station in a number of capacities over the years. From 1988-2014 she also taught an undergraduate class in radio production at Webster University. Mary was inducted into the St. Louis Media History Foundation Media Hall of Fame in April, 2017 and received the Gateway Media Literacy Partners' Charles Klotzer Media Literacy Award in 2012. Mary retired from St. Louis Public Radio in 2018, but still serves the station as a St. Louis Symphony Producer.
Don Marsh served as host of St. Louis Public Radio’s “St. Louis on the Air" from 2005 to 2019, bringing discussions of significant topics to listeners' ears at noon Monday through Friday. Don has been an active journalist for 58 years in print, radio and television. He has won 12 Regional Emmy Awards for writing, reporting, and producing. He is the recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, was inducted into the St. Louis Media Hall of Fame in 2013, and named “Media Person of the Year” by the St. Louis Press Club in 2015. He has published three books: his most recent, “Coming of Age, Liver Spots and All: A Humorous Look at the Wonders of Getting Old,” “Flash Frames: Journey of a Journeyman Journalist” and “How to be Rude (Politely).” He holds an honorary Doctor of Arts and Letters degree from the University of Missouri-St. Louis.

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