'Something God intended': Anger over senator's rape comments


A US Republican senate candidate who was endorsed by presidential candidate Mitt Romney has said that if a woman becomes pregnant through rape, “it is something God intended to happen”.

Richard Mourdock, the Republican candidate for the US Senate in Indiana, said: “Even when life begins with that horrible situation of rape, that is something that God intended to happen.”

The remark drew criticism from his Democratic opponent, congressman Joe Donnelly, as well as from Mr Romney’s camp – even as Mourdock defended his words.

During the debate in New Albany, Indiana, Mourdock, Donnelly and Libertarian candidate Andrew Horning were asked about their views on abortion.

“The only exception I have to have an abortion is in that case of the life of the mother,” Mourdock said. “I struggled with it myself for a long time, but I came to realise that life is that gift from God and I think even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape that it is something God intended to happen.”

Mourdock, the state treasurer who is a favourite of the conservative Tea Party movement, ousted longtime senator Richard Lugar in the Republican primary earlier this year. He is locked in a tight race with Donnelly ahead of the November 6th election.

Mourdock later said people “mistook” his comments and “twisted” them.

Earlier, Democratic National Committee chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz called Mourdock’s comments “outrageous and demeaning to women”. Donnelly said rape “is a heinous and violent crime in every instance”.

“The God I believe in. . . does not intend for rape to happen – ever, Donnelly said. “What Mr Mourdock said is shocking, and it is stunning that he would be so disrespectful to survivors of rape.”

Romney, who on Monday launched statewide ads endorsing Mourdock, distanced himself on Tuesday from the remark by his fellow Republican. – (Reuters)