Sen. Roy Blunt joins four former Missouri senators to call on Akin to step aside

Liz Goodwin

Sen. Roy Blunt, a Republican from Missouri, has joined with four former GOP Missouri senators to call on Rep. Todd Akin to step out of his Senate race.

"We do not believe it serves the national interest for Congressman Todd Akin to stay in this race," Blunt said in a joint statement with former Sens. John Ashcroft, Kit Bond, John Danforth and Jim Talent. "The issues at stake are too big, and this election is simply too important. The right decision is to step aside." Blunt is the latest in a string of national Republicans asking Todd to step aside after he said Sunday that victims of "legitimate rape" rarely become pregnant and thus don't need access to abortion.

But Akin said on Mike Huckabee's radio show Tuesday afternoon that he doesn't plan on dropping out. "I believe we can win this," Akin said. He said he was unconcerned that the National Republican Senatorial Committee is withdrawing $5 million from his race, while outside conservative super PAC Crossroads GPS also plans to pull its support from him.

"I misspoke one word in one sentence in one day and all of a sudden everybody decides overnight, 'Oh, Akin can't win. Well I don't agree with that," Akin said. The six-term congressman mentioned a recent poll that shows his comment hasn't hurt his chances against Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill. The two are neck and neck.

Akin has until Sept. 25 to drop out with a court order. Tuesday at 5 p.m. is the latest he could step aside without a court order.