After the Republican-led House of Representatives voted to defund Planned Parenthood, the abortion provider launched one of its most aggressive grassroots campaigns urging the Senate's Democratic majority to block the measure.
In attacking the Pence Amendment, the provision which bars the group from receiving federal tax dollars, Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards warned that such a measure restricting women's access to contraception service would only result in more abortions. But is this claim really supported by the facts?
The Daily Beast's Kirsten Powers admits that after intuitively believing the argument and initially opposing the defunding provision, "a little research" forced her to change her stance:
A January 2011 fact sheet by the pro-abortion rights Guttmacher Institute listed all the reasons that women who have had an abortion give for their unexpected pregnancy, and not one of them is lack of access to contraception. In fact, 54 percent of women who had abortions had used a contraceptive method, if incorrectly, in the month they got pregnant. For the 46 percent who had not used contraception, 33 percent had perceived themselves to be at low risk for pregnancy; 32 percent had had concerns about contraceptive methods; 26 percent had had unexpected sex, and 1 percent had been forced to have sex. Not one fraction of 1 percent said they got pregnant because they lacked access to contraception. Some described having unexpected sex, but all that can be said about them is that they are irresponsible, not that they felt they lacked access to contraception. ...
But what is truly astonishing about the Guttmacher statistics is that they are completely unchanged from a decade ago. ...
Over this time period, the U.S. government has funneled billions of dollars to Planned Parenthood, in large part because the organization claims to provide services to avoid unplanned pregnancies – a laudable goal. Yet despite a robust budget—Planned Parenthood reported a total annual revenue of $1.1 billion in its last financial filing—the organization has done absolutely nothing to change the fundamental dynamics of the United States’ abortion rate. ...
To preserve its federal subsidy, Planned Parenthood continues to claim that without its contraception services the abortion rate will go up. This deception smacks of a fleecing of taxpayers in an effort to promote an ideological agenda, rather than a sincere effort to help women plan families.
Claiming that their contraception services control the country's abortion rate is not the only false claim Planned Parenthood is making to retain their free-flow of federal tax dollars. Just days ago, Richards falsely claimed that PP offers mammograms and that cutting funding for Planned Parenthood would mean more undetected breast cancer. (~3:57).
During the same episode, HLN's sympathetic host Joy Behar derided pro-lifers as "illogical… evil… immoral… unethical… and stupid.”
"Whatever you think of abortion rights, this is not the kind of organization that taxpayers should be funding," Powers concludes.