This article is from the archive of our partner National Journal

Republicans played damage control on Sunday's talk shows after Rep. Todd Akin's "legitimate rape" comments last week, with some dismissing his place in the Republican Party moving forward.

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., went as far as to say that Akin, if elected, will not be welcomed by his Senate colleagues.

"Akin should realize having the nomination of your party is a privilege and if you abuse that privilege, you are not eligible to keep it," McCain said on NBC's Meet the Press. "What he said was unacceptable and we Republicans have to consider all options, and to start with, make sure Mr. Akin knows he will not have the support of the mainstream Republican Party or any of our organizations."

While criticizing Akin's comments on rape, some Republicans said his positions on abortion were not necessarily misguided. "He had misguided views about rape," former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush said on NBC's Meet the Press. "That's a totally different subject."

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer went so far as to say the Republican Party "is the party of women."

"We have been really, really good to women candidates," she said on NBC's Meet the Press. "You look at just governors alone. We've got more women republican governors than we do Democrats. We believe in life. "¦ But we are very, very open and supportive of women and the women's issues."

Brewer, echoing Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell's comments on ABC, said this issue was a distraction from talking about the economy and jobs.

"But the bottom line is most women want to talk about jobs and the economy," she said. "They want to talk about their children's future. And we, as Republicans, need to drive that message down."

This article is from the archive of our partner National Journal.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.