Good evening and thanks for being part of the discussion. Part Two is a smorgasbord of pro-life stories. Part Three is an essay from the one and only Nat Hentoff. Part Four is an amazing except from the Philadelphia Grand Jury that investigated abortionist Kermit Gosnell. Part Five is an encouraging word from “Autos for Life.” Over at Today’s News & Views, we update you on the remarkable case of a woman who was undergoing in vitro fertilization. She and her husband refused to abort when they learned that the wrong embryo had been implanted. David Prentice updates us on the latest on adult stem cells while SPUC explains the key role it played in a favorable decision that came down Monday from the British high court. To do the best job possible I need your feedback on both Today’s News & Views and National Right to Life News Today. Please send your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you like, join those who are following me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/daveha .
Yesterday we blogged about an important letter the National Right to Life Committee sent to Members of Congress detailing the many issues NRLC anticipated coming up this week as the House of Representatives considers the Continuing Resolution to fund all federal programs through September 30, 2011. One of these significant issues is the Pence Amendment which would deny all federal funds to the Planned Parenthood Federation of America and 102 PPFA affiliates through September 30.
The late pro-life champion Henry Hyde once called NRLC the “flagship” of the Pro-Life Movement. PPFA is our counterpart on the anti-life side.
For decades PPFA has been the recipient of an enormous amount of federal money and grants. Even though it is the largest–by far–abortion provider, and the most aggressive–by leaps and bounds–PPFA has been able to maintain a public image in which abortion is portrayed as an afterthought in its “services” and the amount of federal money it receives so small it’s practically a rounding error. And because abortion is such a trivial amount of PPFA’s business, we’re told, attempts to cut off its funding are misguided, if not actively “anti-woman.”
This is 180 degrees away from the truth.
PPFA’s talking point appeared in a story in today’s POLITICO, but it can be found in a hundred different places: “Planned Parenthood performed 328,300 abortions in 2008, which would account for about a quarter of the 1.21 million abortions that year, according to statistics from the Guttmacher Institute [true]. And those abortions made up 3 percent of the patient services that Planned Parenthood offered in 2008” [grossly misleading].
I’m linking you to a story that appeared several years ago, written by Dr. Randall K. O’Bannon, NRLC’s Director of Education and an expert on PPFA (www.nrlc.org/news/2007/NRL06/PPFA.html). It explains in detail why the 3% figure radically falsifies the extent to which abortion is crucial to PPFA’s bottom line.
I interviewed Dr. O’Bannon earlier today for an update. He made four points.
“First, at the going rates, abortion accounts for not 3% of PPFA’s income, but at least a third of their clinic income,” O’Bannon said. “Why does a corporation taking in a billion dollars a year, performing more than three hundred thousand abortions a year, need a handout from from taxpayers?”
O’Bannon added, “If Planned Parenthood devoted all its time, money, and energy to saving lives, that would be no problem. But PPFA is destroying hundreds of thousands of innocent lives every year, fiercely defending abortion at the federal, state, and local level.”
“Second, as we have documented in a number of stories for National Right to Life News, PPFA is not only expanding the number of abortions it performs, even as the numbers have gone down, but it is also building gigantic mega-clinics as part of a campaign to monopolize the provision of abortion.”
Third, O’Bannon said, “PPFA is demanding that every affiliate have an abortion clinic within the next two years, or lose affiliation. Does that sound like abortion is a ‘minor’ part of their business?”
O’Bannon concluded, “And fourth, the public has never wanted their tax dollars funding abortion, let alone going to the nation’s largest abortion chain.”
PPFA’s 2008-2009 Annual Report does not break out what portion of the $363 million in governmental grants and contracts it received came from the FEDERAL government. But the attached chart does show the correlation between increased government funding to PPFA and increased abortions conducted by PPFA.