Fox News co-host apologizes for rape remark

A day after questioning whether there's a prevalence of rape on college campuses, Fox News co-host Bob Beckel apologized for the remark.

"It's a horrible, horrendous issue," Bob Beckel, the liberal co-host of "The Five," said on Wednesday's show. "Simply put, rape is rape. Whether it's date rape or it's somebody coming in off the campus trying to rape somebody else. I very strongly feel that way. So, I just want to straighten the record out on that. I simply was trying to make—there was not a distinction to make here."

On Tuesday, the Fox roundtable had been discussing a proposal to ban concealed weapons on Colorado campuses when Beckel asked, "When was the last time you heard about a rape on campus?”

"What are you talking about? It’s rampant," co-host Eric Bolling had responded.

"Oh, it's rampant?" he asked.

[Related: Fox News co-host under fire for rape remark]

“In particular, date rape on campus,” said co-host Dana Perino.

"What are you going to take a gun out and shoot your date?" Beckel asked.

His comments sparked an understandable backlash., for instance, the website operated by conservative blogger Michelle Malkin, called Beckel a "cretinous misogynist."

"Vomit," Malkin herself tweeted.

In 2010, the Department of Justice estimated that 25 percent of college women "will be victims of rape or attempted rape before they graduate within a four-year college period." It also noted that women "between the ages of 16 to 24 will experience rape at a rate that's four times higher than the assault rate of all women." And, it said, schools with more than 6,000 students "average one rape per day during the school year.”

According to New York University's "National Statistics about Sexual Violence on College Campuses," fewer than 5 percent of such cases are reported to law enforcement.