OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — A Republican congressional candidate says abortion should not be legal, even when it involves "the rape thing," according to audio provided Wednesday to The Associated Press.
An activist working on behalf of liberal group FUSE Washington asked questions of Republican hopeful John Koster during a Sunday fundraiser. Koster said he does not oppose abortion when the life of the mother is in danger but then explains he would oppose it when it involves rape or incest.
Koster twice uses the phrase "the rape thing" when describing his views, first saying that he knows a woman who was raped and gave up the child for adoption without any regrets.
"But on the rape thing, it's like, how does putting more violence onto a woman's body and taking the life of an innocent child that's a consequence of this crime, how does that make it better?" Koster said in the exchange.
Koster's campaign manager Larry Stickney says the candidate has long been a proponent of dealing strongly with sex offenders. He noted that Koster worked in the state legislature on legislation to crack down on sex offenders and has daughters of his own.
"To imply that he's cavalier about the issue is preposterous," Stickney said.