Yesterday, when giving an interview to Greg Knapp on KCMO, republican extremist Todd Akin stated that he would ban emergency contraception because he "believes it is abortion," and he would ban it for everyone, with no exceptions.
First off, let's have a quick run down of what emergency contraception, also known as the morning after pill, is.
The morning after pill works by keeping a woman's ovaries from releasing eggs. Pregnancy cannot happen if there is no egg to join with sperm. If there are no eggs to join with sperm, there can be no pregnancy that can be aborted. Additionally, emergency contraception cannot induce an abortion if a woman is already pregnant so even if she were to take the morning after pill, an abortion would not be induced (Van Look & Stewart, 1998).
Akin was then asked about his views on abortion, something else he is clearly against, and whether or not he would support exceptions for rape, incest or the life of the mother and he went on to say that only in extreme instances when the life of the mother is in jeopardy would he possibly have an exception. In his words, "you optimize life" which, to me, sounds like if a woman gets pregnant by rape or incest, she must give birth in order to "optimize life," as Akin would put it.
If Akin would ban emergency contraception, what else would he ban? Women's other forms of birth control, since the morning after pill is simply another type of contraception? The question needs an answer since Akin has clearly placed himself on an extremely slippery slope.
What does Akin have to say to a woman who is pregnant after being raped? Worse, a woman raped through incest? Akin's message is clear: you must give birth, no matter what.
With these viewpoints, Akin is so extreme, it's no wonder that his fellow republicans wonder whether or not he has any chance come November.
Full transcript after the jump.
GK: I wanted to get to the issue of the actual morning after pill, so are you saying you would like that to be banned for everyone or do you have exceptions for rape and incest? What is your position?
TA: As far as I'm concerned, the morning after pill is a form of abortion, and I think we shouldn't have abortion in this country.
GK: No exceptions for rape, incest, life of the mother? No exceptions at all?
TA: Well, uh, the life of the mother, the situation there is one where I think you want to optimize life. If you try to save the mother's life, you try to save the child. Uh, there are certain things like you get a tubal pregnancy, uh where the child has absolutely no chance of surviving, and then you do the best you can to save the mother's life. So I think you optimize life is the way I would describe it.
GK: So just to be clear though, you would like to ban the morning after pill, totally for everyone?
TA: Yea, I think that is a form of abortion, and I don't support it.