GOP super-PAC flips to support Akin

A Republican super-PAC that had backed one of Rep. Todd Akin's (R-Mo.) primary opponents will jump in to help the embattled Senate candidate in the final week of his campaign.

Now Or Never PAC will spend $800,000 on television advertising for the cash-strapped Akin between now and Election Day, spokesman Tyler Harber told The Hill.


The group's ad is less than a ringing endorsement: It focuses on winning Senate control and defeating incumbent Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), and asks voters who "don't agree with everything he says" to back Akin anyway.

"The last four years we've struggled. Obama's policies made things worse. Mitt Romney can take our nation in a new direction but he needs a Senate that supports him," the ad's female narrator says. "That's where Todd Akin comes in. You don't have to agree with everything he says, but you can be sure in the Senate that Akin will vote for Romney's policies to get Americans working again. Claire McCaskill would fight Romney every step of the way. To avoid Washington gridlock and get this country back to work our best choice is Todd Akin."

Akin was the heavy favorite to defeat McCaskill until he said on local television that "legitimate rape" rarely leads to pregnancy. The remark caused a national stir, and top Republicans asked Akin to drop out for the good of the party. Romney also distanced himself from the controversial remarks.

Akin's support plummeted, and most recent polls show him trailing McCaskill by 6 to 8 points.

Harber admitted that he was not their preferred candidate (they'd run ads for Republican Sarah Steelman during the primary), but he emphasized the organization's goal of recapturing the Senate. Now or Never recently has spent large sums in Senate races in Montana, Ohio, Arizona and North Dakota, and it has also run ads for Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Ill.).

"Now or Never PAC is committed to helping the Republican Party recapture the U.S. Senate," the PAC spokesman said. "Todd Akin may have not been our first choice for Republican nominee in the race to replace Claire McCaskill. But Congressman Akin plays an important role in securing the Senate chamber."

Watch the ad: