Richard Mourdock's rape comments at a debate on Tuesday night aren't making Mitt Romney's life any easier.
Desperately trying to fend off claims that he doesn't understand women's issues, the Republican nominee has been doing everything he can to distance himself from the Indiana Senate candidate's remark that "even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that is something that God intended to happen" made as he debated three-term congressman Joe Donnelly.
The problem isn't as simple as denouncing Mourdock's statements. There's a Web video circulating that shows Romney whole-heartedly endorsing the Indiana Senate candidate - and that Web video is far from old. Romney publicly gave his support on Sunday, just two days before the Indiana debate.
"With so much at stake I hope you'll join me in supporting Richard Mourdock for U.S. Senate," Romney says in the video. Boy, does Romney wish he could take back those 17 words.
Now the Democratic National Committee has spliced together segments of the Mourdock comments and Romney's endorsement in a damaging video.
Romney's team took swift action on Tuesday, as Romney's spokeswoman Andrea Saul released this statement: "Gov. Romney disagrees with Richard Mourdock's comments, and they do not reflect his views." Yet Romney decided not to retract his endorsement, perplexing political pundits on both sides of the aisle.
Knowing that the GOP is working hard to court female voters, Mourdock back-pedaled this morning, putting out a statement saying: "God creates life, and that was my point. God does not want rape, and by no means was I suggested that he does. Rape is a horrible thing, and for anyone to twist my words otherwise is absurd and sick."
Since Missouri Congressman Todd Akin's interview this summer on KTVI-TV in St. Louis in which he said that pregnancy from rape is "really rare" because "if it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down," the GOP has been scrambling to prove the party doesn't take rape lightly. Now Romney finds himself defending someone else's comments yet again - and likely wondering why his party can't stop talking.
Watch the Democratic National Committee's Romney/Mourdock advertisement here...