NYT: Say, that Planned Parenthood attack ad on Romney might be a bit unfair

posted at 12:41 pm on May 30, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Planned Parenthood has endorsed Barack Obama, ending that drawn-out suspense of this round in the endorsement battles.  (I’m certain that Team Romney is devastated to have lost the oh-so-unpredictable Planned Parenthood Seal of Approval.)  The national chain of abortion mills has also launched a new television spot warning that because Romney wants to end federal funding for Planned Parenthood, he’s obviously aiming to enslave the wimminses, or something:

Even the New York Times throws a flag on this play, via Katrina Trinko:

“When Mitt Romney says, ‘Planned Parenthood, we’re going to get rid of that,’” the ad says, “Romney is saying he’ll deny women the birth control and cancer screenings they depend on.”

That statement can be misleading. Mr. Romney was answering a question about what federal funding he would target for elimination or reductions if he is elected. His campaign has said he wants to end federal funding of Planned Parenthood, not the organization itself.

You think?  Planned Parenthood wants to argue that they have a right to federal funding, which is a novel concept, especially for a private-sector business.  That’s the only way in which they can argue that Romney would act to destroy Planned Parenthood as President.  In fact, Romney hasn’t argued at all that Planned Parenthood should be somehow banned by government, but only that they should exist on their own income and not taxpayer funds.  Given the numerous occasions where their clinics have acted to evade or defy state laws on child abuse, Romney hardly has a fringe outlook on that point.

The same can be said about their argument on Roe v Wade, albeit with more nuance.  An overturning of Roe would not, in fact, make abortion any more or less illegal than it is now — at least not immediately.  It would end the preposterous notion that abortion is a constitutionally-guaranteed right and return the question of legality and regulation back to the states, where it belonged in the first place.  That would tend to give states more power to proscribe abortion or at least limit its availability, but it would also remove the question from the level of national politics — where Romney is running to be President.   In any event, Romney himself can’t overturn Roe (a point he was making at the time from which this clip was culled), and even more to the point would be less able to restrict choice as President in an overturned-Roe era.

It seems that Planned Parenthood is as honest in their politics as they are in their business.


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