Todd Akin misses the old "ladylike" Claire McCaskill: says she was "very agressive" in debate.
Todd Akin Pines for the Days When Mouthy Claire McCaskill Was More "Ladylike"
The XX Factor
What Women Really Think
Sept. 27 2012 4:33 PM

Todd Akin Pines for the Days When Mouthy Claire McCaskill Was More "Ladylike"

Sen. Claire McCaskill explains how she likes to crush men, hates to knit

Photo by Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images.

Todd Akin is back! No, not back in the lead, exactly—but he seems to have relocated his authentic self, ratting out his opponent, Sen. Claire McCaskill, to the Kansas City Star for unladylike behavior. What is it that she’s done that has offended his gentile male sensibility so? She was assertive in their debate:

“I think we have a very clear path to victory, and apparently Claire McCaskill thinks we do, too, because she was very aggressive at the debate, which was quite different than it was when she ran against Jim Talent,” Akin said. “She had a confidence and was much more ladylike (in 2006), but in the debate on Friday she came out swinging, and I think that’s because she feels threatened.”


The Washington Post didn’t seem nearly as offended in its debate write-up, saying there were “no surprises” and that “both sides said politely that the other was lying.” They talked a lot about the Post Office. And the AP reports that “the hour-long debate was largely cordial. Neither candidate interrupted the other. They greeted each other at the start and parted with smiles and brief handshakes.”

Still, she spoke and argued and stated her positions on things, so Akin does have a point.

While we can’t imagine the “ladylike” comment changing anyone’s vote at this point—if you are a woman who has decided to stick by Akin after the “legitimate rape” debacle, you probably also think Claire was lippy—it’s still a great answer to McCaskill’s latest ad, which ends asking: What will he say next?

Allison Benedikt is Slate’s news director. Follow her on Twitter.

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