Trump: Planned Parenthood can keep federal funds -- if it stops abortions

Sounds like a great deal, right? After all, Planned Parenthood insists that only 3% of its business involves abortions, and they get $500 million from the federal government. That way, they could focus that much more on all their work in pre-natal care! And yet …

The White House, concerned about the possible political repercussions of the Republican effort to defund Planned Parenthood, has proposed preserving federal payments to the group if it discontinues providing abortions.

The proposal, which was never made formally, has been rejected as an impossibility by officials at Planned Parenthood, which receives about $500 million annually in federal funding. That money helps pay for women’s health services the organization provides, not for abortion services.

“Let’s be clear: Federal funds already do not pay for abortions,” Dawn Laguens, the executive vice president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said on Monday. “Offering money to Planned Parenthood to abandon our patients and our values is not a deal that we will ever accept. Providing critical health care services for millions of American women is nonnegotiable.”

This deal seems pretty straightforward, even if the White House never quite made it official. Planned Parenthood wants to keep receiving Title IX funds intended for low-income women who need actual health care that could be provided by other clinics, especially those which offer actual pre-natal health care. If that was the case, they could get rid of the supposed three percent of their business that deals with abortions and use those resources to expand other offerings, including services they already claim to do but don’t actually provide at all. Their refusal to even consider the idea speaks volumes about their “values,” as do their abortion sales quotas.

Ah, but does that make sense if abortions make up more than 3% of their bottom line? In their 2014-15 annual report, Planned Parenthood claimed that they performed over 332,000 abortions. In that budget year, they spend $782.3 million on “medical services,” the vast majority of their overall $879 million in program services. “Medical services” wouldn’t include mammograms or prenatal care, obviously. If abortions only took up 3% of their fiscal medical business, one would have to conclude that abortions only cost Planned Parenthood $70 per procedure, which seems extremely low. The other program services listed pale in comparison — sex education gets $48.3 million, for instance, and the other categories of program services don’t provide services to patients at all (“engage communities,” “refresh our brand,” etc).

Or we can look at it another way. Their annual report shows overall revenue at $1.146 billion, which includes $553.7 million from government funds, and only $309.2 million from “non-government health services revenue” — fees. If abortions only amount to 3% of their revenue, that would be $34.38 million for 332,000 abortions, or $103 per abortion (gross, not net after costs) if no other revenue was being used to cover it. These numbers don’t add up with the 3% claim.

Trump’s deal makes this much clear, at least: Planned Parenthood values its abortion mill much more than it values $500 million in government funding each year. That really tells us all we need to know about their 3% claim, their values, and the use of taxpayer dollars to subsidize the operations of the world’s leading abortion mill.

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John Stossel 12:01 AM on June 09, 2023