On Sunday a top Republican continued the party's assault on women's health. Republican Congressman, Missouri Senate nominee and House Science Committee member Todd Akin made shocking and offensive comments regarding rape victims. When asked about his opposition to abortion even for victims of sexual violence, Akin said "legitimate rape" doesn't cause pregnancy because "the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down."
In response, Dr. David Gill, nominee in Illinois 13th Congressional district, said:
"As an ER doctor, I know that there is no basis for Akin's offensive and extremely irresponsible claim. According to the National Institutes of Health, more than 30,000 pregnancies result from rape each year.
Too often, I have treated rape victims in the Emergency Room. These women suffer extreme emotional and physical trauma, and are often terrified by the added anguish of a possible unwanted pregnancy. There is nothing illegitimate about rape victims' injuries. As a physician, it is my responsibility to stand up for these women and say "enough is enough."
Akin's offensive comments are part of the out of touch mentality we see in Congress. Washington politicians have tried to limit access to birth control this year -- even for married women. I will not stand by and allow this assault on women and their rights to continue."