Democratic lawmakers are demanding that Google remove pro-life pregnancy centers from search results when a pregnant woman
searches online for an abortion clinic.
Thirteen senators and three members of the U.S. House, all Democrats, sent a letter to Google's parent company, Alphabet Inc., Friday urging the company to remove "fake clinics" and crisis pregnancy centers from search results when people do a Google search for "abortion clinic" or "abortion pill."
Virginia Sen. Mark Warner and Michigan Representative Elissa Slotkin were the top signatories on the letter, which was first reported by Reuters.
"Google should not be displaying anti-abortion fake clinics or crisis pregnancy centers in search results for users that are searching for an 'abortion clinic' or 'abortion pill,'" the lawmakers wrote.
"If Google must continue showing these misleading results in search results and Google Maps, the results should, at the very least, be appropriately labeled," they said.
According to Reuters, the letter cited a recent study by the Center for Countering Digital Hate, a left-wing nonprofit. The study found that one in 10 Google search results for abortion services in so-called "Trigger Law" states led users to pro-life pregnancy centers, which the left-wing group dubbed "fake clinics."
Crisis pregnancy centers offer reproductive health services for women that can include free pregnancy tests, ultrasounds, STD testing and treatment, and counseling or therapy for mothers who need emotional support after giving birth or women who have had an abortion. Many of these organizations are operated by faith-based groups that do not provide abortion services.
Abortion rights activists have accused pro-life pregnancy centers of providing women with misinformation about abortions in an attempt to dissuade them from taking the lives of their unborn children. Pro-life groups deny this charge.
The CCDH study said that 11% of search results for "abortion clinic near me" and "abortion pill" in 13 Republican-led states that have passed laws that would ban abortion if the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade directed women to pro-life pregnancy centers instead of abortion clinics. This included 37% of Google Maps results.
"When people search for information or services relating to their sexual and reproductive health, Google is sending them to sites that users might expect contains robust, scientific, evidence-driven healthcare information – but they actually contain ideologically-driven opinion and misinformation," said Imran Ahmed, CEO of the Center for Countering Digital Hate.
“We have a right to expect that safety by design is a key consideration for any tech platform. If Google refuses to guarantee users’ right to good information, it will be up to lawmakers to step in to ensure that people aren’t harmed by Google’s negligence and greed.”
In recent weeks, pro-life pregnancy centers, faith-based groups, and churches across the country have come under attack from radical pro-abortion anarchists who have pledged to escalate violence unless these organizations shut down. The FBI said Friday it has opened investigations into these terrorist threats following at least 16 crimes, including firebombing and vandalism, allegedly committed by a group called Jane's Revenge.