Smith, who is anti-abortion, joined the growing chorus of Republican politicians swiftly distancing themselves from Missouri U.S. Rep. Todd Akin, who when asked about his opposition to abortion even in cases of rape, said women's bodies have ways to prevent pregnancy "if it's a legitimate rape."
His answer went viral and set off a firestorm of opposition. Some Republicans called for him to suspend his campaign. The national Senate campaign arm and a powerful outside group said it was cutting off funding and resources. Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan each strongly denounced the remarks. And President Barack Obama was asked for his reaction as the first question at a rare White House news briefing.
Smith's campaign, when asked by The Morning Call about Akin's remarks, did not weigh in on whether Akin should continue his Senate run, but disavowed the comment.
"Tom Smith disagrees strongly with Congressman Akin's comment," said Megan Piwowar, Smith spokesperson. "Both Sen. Casey and Tom Smith share pro-life beliefs and in no way does Congressman Akin's comments reflect the pro-life community's thoughts and views on women who are victims of rape."Akin has since apologized and said he misspoke. He is challenging U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill in a race that, at least until this week, is considered a toss up.