“Legitimate rape” is back. Just a couple months after former Rep. Todd Akin’s (R-MO) famous use of the phrase helped contribute to a double-digit loss in the 2012 Missouri Senate race, a Republican congressman and medical doctor said at a breakfast Thursday that Akin was “partly right” when he said it.
Rep. Phil Gingrey, an ob-gyn and chairman of the GOP Doctors Caucus, explained to the audience at the Cobb Chamber of Commerce breakfast Thursday in Smyrna, Ga., that Akin wasn’t far off on the science when he said rape victims rarely get pregnant because their bodies have “ways of shutting that whole thing down.”
“I’ve delivered lots of babies, and I know about these things. It is true,” Gingrey said, according to the Marietta Daily Journal. “We tell infertile couples all the time that are having trouble conceiving because of the woman not ovulating, ‘Just relax. Drink a glass of wine. And don’t be so tense and uptight because all that adrenaline can cause you not to ovulate.’ So he was partially right wasn’t he?”
“But the fact that a woman may have already ovulated 12 hours before she is raped, you’re not going to prevent a pregnancy there by a woman’s body shutting anything down because the horse has already left the barn, so to speak,” Gingrey continued. “And yet the media took that and tore it apart.”