Ex-Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee's claim Democrats "played" women to believe "they cannot control their libido" without Washington's help drew Democratic outrage.
"Mike Huckabee has no idea what he's talking about. If this is the GOP rebrand a year later then all they've gotten is a year older," Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz said after Huckabee made his comments to the Republican National Committee's annual winter meeting in Washington.
The DNC quickly put together a 25-second video of Huckabee's remarks made to look like an old black-and-white newsreel. The video's tagline: "The GOP: Leading the way ... to the 1950s."
"It sounds offensive to me, and to women," White House spokesman Jay Carney said during the White House press briefing after a reporter read Huckabee's remarks and asked if they accurately reflected the Obama administration's position.
Huckabee -- who ran for the White House in the early 2008 GOP primaries and has expressed an interest in running again in 2016 -- told fellow Republicans at the Washington meeting Thursday Democrats had a contradictory message: They accuse Republicans of waging a "war on women," he said, while at the same time saying women, in his words, are "helpless and hopeless creatures" and "victims of their gender" who need special government birth control help, such as in the Affordable Care Act.
"Our party stands for the recognition of the equality of women and the capacity of women. That's not a war on women; it's a war for them," Huckabee said.
"And if the Democrats want to insult the women of America by making them believe that they are helpless without Uncle Sugar coming in and providing for them a prescription each month for birth control because they cannot control their libido or their reproductive system without the help of the government, then so be it," said Huckabee, a Fox News Channel personality who is an ordained Southern Baptist minister and a favorite of Christian conservatives.
"Let us take this discussion all across America because women are far more than the Democrats have played them to be," he said. "And woman across America need to stand up and say, 'Enough of that nonsense.'"
The audience at the RNC meeting greeted his comments with cheers.
Female voters in 2012 voted for President Obama over Republican nominee Mitt Romney 55 percent to 44 percent.
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Original headline: Huckabee: Democrats 'play' women on libido
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