INDIANAPOLIS — Women born as a result of rape are defending Indiana Republican Richard Mourdock in the waning days of a campaign that has been shaken up by the Senate candidate's comments on rape and abortion.
The women call Mourdock a hero for opposing abortion in cases of rape and incest in a new video from the Chicago-based One Nation Under God Foundation. One woman, Pam Stenzel, says she believes a child "should not be executed for the crimes of their father."
One Nation executive director Paul Caprio said Thursday the video is being spread online through social networks, but that there are no plans to air the video on TV. The group does not formally endorse candidates.
Mourdock's comments in a debate last week that pregnancy resulting from rape is something "God intended" re-shaped the tight Indiana Senate race and gave Democrats a new line of criticism to use against him. But national groups opposing abortion groups have coalesced around his candidacy.
Wendy Sikes, an Indianapolis resident and school bus driver, said the video is her first time speaking out publicly about her experience. Sikes said she was asked by people in Indianapolis who oppose abortion if she would participate in the video and that she hopes her statement reaches rape victims considering abortion.
"It's just important for me to let people know that my life matters," she said. "It really felt like this it was the right time, and I was honored to be asked to be included in the group of women that are so well-spoken."
Mourdock has tried to move past the comments, arguing that his Democratic opponent's support of "President barack Obama's health care law and the auto bailout are more important. His campaign, however, has sent fundraising appeals using the comments to fire up his base of support.