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Romney says Akin should exit Missouri Senate race
Uproar » Rep. Todd Akin frantically trying to salvage once-promising bid.


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The committee had set aside $5 million for advertising and had other plans for logistical and field support for Akin’s campaign before his comments on Sunday.

At least one outside group that has advertised extensively in Missouri, the Karl Rove-backed Crossroads GPS, has also said it was also pulling all of its advertising in Missouri.

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Two GOP officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity because they did not want to irritate Akin, said party officials seeking to talk with him were having trouble reaching him Monday night and Tuesday morning.

Akin campaign spokesman Ryan Hite declined Tuesday to reveal Akin’s whereabouts but said he was not in his suburban St. Louis campaign office. Hite said the campaign may release information about his public schedule later.

The apology video Akin posted on YouTube early Tuesday was an apparent attempt to claw back some of the lost funding.

"Fact is, rape can lead to pregnancy. The truth is rape has many victims. The mistake I made was in the words I said, not in the heart I hold. I ask for your forgiveness," he said in the video.

Just two weeks ago, Akin was at the top of the political world in Missouri after winning a hotly contested three-way battle with millionaire businessman John Brunner and former state Treasurer Sarah Steelman for the right to challenge McCaskill in the November election. Missouri has grown increasingly conservative in recent years, and McCaskill is seen as vulnerable.

One anti-abortion group expressed support for Akin, while another called on him to step aside.

Missouri Right to Life, which opposes a woman’s right to get an abortion even in cases of rape and incest, said Akin’s "consistent defense of innocent unborn human life clearly contrasts" with McCaskill’s position. But the Christian Defense Coalition called on him to withdraw.

Names are being floated about a possible replacement for Akin. A favorite is Tom Schweich, the state auditor who was courted to run for Senate earlier this year but declined.


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Other names mentioned include former Gov. Matt Blunt, the son of Sen. Roy Blunt; two members of Missouri’s House delegation, Blaine Luetkemeyer and Jo Ann Emerson; and Akin’s two unsuccessful primary opponents, Brunner and Steelman.

Talent, who lost his seat to McCaskill in 2006, said Monday he had been asked to run but declined.

If Akin were to leave, state law gives the Republican state committee two weeks to name a replacement. The new candidate must file within 28 days of Akin’s exit.



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