NRSC quietly backed Akin in the end

In September, NRSC Chair John Cornyn said "We have no plans to do so"

By Jillian Rayfield

Published December 7, 2012 2:07PM (EST)

After insisting that Todd Akin was on his own in his bid for Senate in Missouri, the National Republican Senatorial Committee quietly sent him a life raft in the final days of the campaign.

Politico reports that the NRSC gave the money to the Missouri Republican Party, which spent it on a last-minute ad buy in support of Akin.

After Akin made his infamous "legitimate rape" comments, national Republicans condemned his remarks and urged him to drop out of the primary, saying they would not support him financially. In September, NRSC Chair John Cornyn, R-Texas, told the Kentucky Courier-Journal that the plan hadn't changed and the NRSC wouldn't support Akin. “We have no plans to do so,” he said, adding: “I just think that this is not a winnable race."

“We’re done,” he also told the Hill in September.

From Politico, according to records released Thursday:

The NRSC sent $760,000 to the Missouri GOP on Nov. 1-2, according to post-election filings by the state party. The Missouri GOP, along with Akin’s campaign, dumped those funds into a large TV buy seeking to boost his campaign.

As word broke about the Missouri GOP’s late investment into the McCaskill-Akin race, the NRSC adamantly refused to say whether it was involved at all.

At the time, the NRSC refused to comment on how the Missouri GOP got a sudden influx of campaign cash. Right after the election, Politico asked Cornyn, but he was cryptic. “We needed to do what we needed to do to help win Senate seats,” Cornyn said.

Jillian Rayfield

Jillian Rayfield is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on politics. Follow her on Twitter at @jillrayfield or email her at

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2012 Elections John Cornyn Nrsc Texas Todd Akin