via CNN

Republican Rep. Todd Akin isn’t budging. Despite calls from his party establishment to drop out — including a personal phone call from vice presidential hopeful Paul Ryan — Akin said Wednesday he is staying in the Senate race.

“The people of Missouri chose me to be their candidate. And I don’t believe it’s right for party bosses to decide to override those voters,” Akin said on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”

Ryan “did give me a call, and he felt that I had to make a decision, but he advised me that it would be good for me to step down,” Akin said on NBC’s “Today Show.”

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Akin said he told Ryan “that I was going to be looking at this very seriously, trying to weigh all the different points on this,” adding, “it’s not about me — it’s about standing on principle.”

GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney has also called for Akin to step aside.

Akin operates in “an insular environment,” with his wife and son serving as his top advisers, a senior Republican source told CNN. Republican leaders have concluded that Akin “lives in a parallel universe,” the source added.

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