Akin campaign accuses TV station of lying about missed ad payment

Rep. Todd Akin's (R-Mo.) campaign is pushing back against a report that it hasn't entirely paid for ad space it reserved in Missouri, calling the story "simply false" and insisting it's still on the air in the state.

The news sparked fresh speculation that Akin may be running out of money to support his bid to unseat Sen. Claire McCaskill''s (D-Mo.), but in an attempt to quiet those murmurs, his campaign also revealed that it has raised more than $400,000 through online fundraising over the past 20 days.

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A St. Louis CBS affiliate reported earlier that Columbia, Mo.-area station KOMU-TV canceled Akin's scheduled ads because it had only received half of the payment for the buy and that other stations across the state were doing the same. 

However, Perry Akin, Akin's son and campaign manager, said in a statement that the campaign's television buyers "have paid for every ad that has aired and even bought more ad time today."

A source tracking ad buys indicated to The Hill that the station did end up receiving the full payment for the ad on Friday and the buy will be extended until Sept. 12.

"KOMU should be ashamed for publishing a false story when they know what the truth is. No ad was pulled because no ad ever airs without being paid for. Ads are only ever 'pulled' from the air for legal or ethical reasons, and this ad is 100% accurate regarding Claire McCaskill's record," Akin says in the statement.

He added that the campaign will no longer be working with KOMU-TV "because they have lied."

Akin's comments last month, that pregnancy in the case of "legitimate rape" is rare because "the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down," sparked outrage within his party. Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, among others, asked him to leave the Senate race, and outside groups, as well as the National Republican Senatorial Committee, threatened to pull funds.

But Akin persisted, launching a grassroots fundraising effort and receiving some support from social conservatives.

Akin's official campaign account and his communications director, Ryan Hite, worked quickly to quash speculation about the candidate's finances, tweeting at various journalists who had reported the story that it was false. The statement too is an official pushback against the report.