In an election where unaffiliated voters will likely decide the outcome, Romney’s endorsement of Mourdock could drive independents away. Despite Mourdock’s recent gaffe divulging his belief that pregnancies resulting from rape are “something that God intended to happen,” Romney has stood by the Indiana candidate.
A Romney campaign spokesperson released a statement last week regarding Richard Mourdock’s comment, stating, “We disagree on the policy regarding exceptions for rape and incest but still support him.” Romney has decided not to pull a television ad expressing his endorsement of Mourdock, but Mourdock’s ratings are falling in the polls even with the candidate’s support.
Mourdock’s statement has hurt his campaign in Indiana, where he had enjoyed a consistent lead in the polls. In an October poll, the Global Strategy Group reported a two point lead for his opponent, Democrat Joe Donnelly. The results are even more polarized among political independents, the majority of whom strongly favor Donnelly over Mourdock in light of Mourdock’s recent comments.