Michigan GOP nominee under fire for rape analogy, telling daughters to ‘lay down and enjoy it’

A Republican candidate for a seat in the Michigan House of Representatives is condemned by both parties after making an analogy to the 2020 presidential election involving rape and his daughters.

Robert Regan, a favorite to win Michigan’s District 74 seat, made the comment during a live-streamed panel on Sunday in response to a claim that it was “too late” to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.

“It’s kind of like having three daughters. I tell my daughters if rape is unavoidable, just lay down and enjoy it,” Regan said. “That’s not how we roll, that’s not how we won this election.”

Video of the panel, hosted by the Rescue Michigan Coalition, remains available on the group’s Facebook page from Wednesday.

He then compared his victory in the Republican primary race with the biblical tale of David and Goliath, noting that his opponents had more financial support.

Amber Harris, a Republican activist and co-panellist, told Regan during the stream that her analogy was a “disgraceful comment.”

“Advice to your daughters: don’t do this,” Harris said. “Fighting all the time.”

Regan did not immediately return a call from NBC News seeking comment on Wednesday.

Michigan Freedom Fund, a conservative nonprofit, issued a statement calling Regan’s remarks “despicable & disqualifying.”

“I’m a mom to four young girls. Every day I teach them how to defend themselves, know what they’re worth, and how to fight monsters like Regan,” said Tori Sachs, executive director of the Michigan Freedom Fund. “RJ Regan doesn’t belong anywhere near the State Capitol and that’s why we endorsed and supported his opponent.”

Michigan Republican Party Chairman Ron Weiser and Kent GOP Chairman Rob VerHeulen addressed Regan’s “comments” in a joint statement on Tuesday, but did not specify the exact remarks.

“Mr. Regan’s history of making senseless, egregious and offensive comments, including his most recent, is simply irrelevant,” Weiser said. “We are better than that as a party and I absolutely expect better than that from our candidates.”

State Rep. Laurie Pohutsky, a Democrat representing District 19 and chair of the Michigan Progressive Women’s Caucus, condemned Regan’s comments on Twitter Monday.

“Having been in a situation where rape was unavoidable, I can promise this man that there is nothing pleasant about it,” Pohutsky said. “This man is disgusting and I hope HD 74 doesn’t send him to Lansing. I don’t normally say that about people I might end up working with, but he’s horrible.

regan said MLive Monday that he does not want to equate a “stolen election” with rape and that his argument was rather to fight back “because no one likes to be taken advantage of”.

“I’m being pushed back right now because I’m the only one saying we need to decertify the 2020 election. Everyone on this panel said it’s inevitable, let it die, it’s a dead issue, focus on 2022 moving forward,” Regan said. “And I’m like, ‘No, it’s not inevitable. You would never tell a girl if it’s inevitable that you had to lie down and enjoy it, ever. That’s the context of this story.

Donald Trump has falsely blamed his loss on President Joe Biden on voter fraud despite no evidence to support such claims. Former Trump-appointed Attorney General William Barr told The Associated Press in December 2020 that the Justice Department had found no evidence of widespread fraud.

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