3 Absurd Conservative Reactions to the Planned Parenthood ‘Sting’
Earlier this week, right-wing media outlets exploded over the biggest “exposé” since Obama’s supposed military takeover of Texas. “BREAKING: Planned Parenthood director caught on tape selling aborted ‘baby parts,'” read the headline at Live Action, an anti-choice group known for falsely accusing Planned Parenthood of helping traffic child sex slaves and killing babies after birth. (In fact, Planned Parenthood offers a wide range of reproductive health services and cancer screenings to millions of Americans.)
The new video is from a group that calls itself the Center for Medical Progress; it is linked to radical players in the anti-abortion movement like Troy Newman, the head of a group that regularly harasses and intimidates abortion doctors. Like previous Planned Parenthood “stings,” this undercover video was deceptively edited to make it seem as though a Planned Parenthood doctor was discussing the sale of fetal organs and tissue to a biotech representative. In fact, the doctor was discussing fetal tissue donations, which is perfectly legal, and which is always done with the express consent of patients, to someone posing as a biotech representative. To some ears, the doctor’s tone and choice of words in discussing the sensitive issue seemed crass, and indeed Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards acknowledged in a video statement Thursday that the way the doctor spoke did not “reflect [the] compassion” patients have come to expect from Planned Parenthood. But the bigger allegation in the video – that Planned Parenthood was caught selling fetal body parts – was utter nonsense, plain and simple.
Still, that didn’t stop the right from acting like this was the greatest scandal since Monica Lewinsky’s blue dress. They were practically frothing at the mouth, spreading lies and half-truths about Planned Parenthood – long a favorite Republican target. Here are some of the more hyperbolic reactions.
In the video, the Planned Parenthood doctor speaks frankly about the details of her work to people she believes are members of her field – sometimes in gruesome detail. It seemed like for many conservatives, the fact that abortion, like all surgery, is kind of gross was an earth-shattering revelation. For instance, House Speaker John Boehner said in a statement, “I think I’d vomit trying to talk about [the video]. It’s disgusting.”
“GROSS” read a Gateway Pundit headline.
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, a 2016 presidential candidate, decried fetal tissue donation as “shocking and gruesome.”
Rich Lowry of Politico declared that the video should “turn your stomach.”
Now that “gross” is apparently reason enough to oppose a medical procedure, will these folks apply that standard to all surgeries – or just the ones involving lady parts?