Several people have written to note the odd phrase used by Paul Ryan in answering questions about Todd Akin's "the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down" remarks ("In Exclusive Interview, Paul Ryan Distances Self From Todd Akin", KDKA CBS 2, 8/21/2012):
“His statements were outrageous, over the pail. I don’t know anybody who would agree with that. Rape is rape period, end of story,” Ryan told KDKA Political Editor Jon Delano.
I suspect that Mr. Ryan aimed at the familiar expression "beyond the pale" and missed, maybe due to blending it with "over the line". Perhaps he himself thinks that the expression is a metaphor for trying to put six gallons of milk into a five gallon pail, or perhaps the eggcorn-suggesting spelling was due to the transcriber at KDKA. (I note that the original article has now substituted "pale" for "pail".)
Arnold Zwicky entered "beyond the pail" into the Eggcorn Database on 8/16/2007, and discussed it on Language Log in "Pails and Flounders", 8/8/2007. Arnold argued that "beyond the pail" is not really an eggcorn, since neither the original nor the subsitution makes any obvious sense. He quotes Paul Amstrong,
… who used the "pail" spelling in his blog a while back, was astounded to discover that the spelling was supposed to be "pale", and even more astounded to read about the history of the expression. His actual words: "For better or worse, it's an idiom I picked up and I use it as a whole. I don't know where I picked up the pail spelling but I considered it an idiom and thus seemingly odd spellings or disjoint meanings are not beyond reason…")
But I think that "over the pail" really is an eggcorn, since it modifies the expression to make it fit a plausible metaphor of trying to put more stuff into a container than it can hold, with a figurative meaning like "over a limit imposed by nature". "Over the pail" also echoes "over the line" and "over the top", which can have a similar meaning. And as Andy Averill observes in the comments, there's also "kicking over the pail", which Rep. Akin certainly did.
Michael Quinion's World Wide Words had a good explanation of the original expression "beyond the pale" back on 2/8/2003.
Choice of words aside, Rep. Ryan's answers in that interview were more than a bit evasive, since he and Todd Akin co-sponsored a bill in the last congressional session to limit federal funding for abortion coverage to cases of "forcible rape". This presumably aimed to exclude statutory rape, cases where the victim is unconscious, etc. — exactly the same cases that Rep. Akin apparently meant to exclude from his category of "legitimate rape":
Delano: “You sponsored legislation that has the language ‘forcible rape.’ What is forcible rape as opposed…”
Ryan: “Rape is rape. Rape is rape, period. End of story.”
Delano: “So that forcible rape language meant nothing to you at the time?”
Ryan: “Rape is rape and there’s no splitting hairs over rape.”