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Whom Can You Trust?

By Matt Wielgos

Social networks were set on fire Tuesday as the House Oversight Committee entertained the testimony of Cecile Richards, president of the nation’s largest abortion chain. By my observation, sitting mere feet from the action, Richards seemed defiant and unmoved in the face of mounting evidence that this behemoth portending to defend and stand with women has done anything wrong.

Silent and overwhelmed, supporters of the defamed organization and its champion seemed deflated as, question by question, House committee members uncovered a litany of half-truths, lies, deceit, and cover-up. Billed by supporters as “Pink Out Day,” the reality was that this was fallout day for Cecile Richards and Planned Parenthood.

Democratic lawmakers attempted to rescue Richards from the collapse of the Planned Parenthood façade that has for so long deceived the American people, but to no avail. The reality is, they cannot. Beginning with the release of undercover investigative videos implicating Planned Parenthood, its affiliates, and partnering organizations in illegal trafficking of baby body parts, the hearing zeroed in on the less horrific but equally incriminating evidence that profit, rather than women’s health and well-being, and luxurious and lavish lifestyle, rather than care and compassion for the poor and most vulnerable, are amongst other more diabolical objectives at the heart of what we know as Planned Parenthood.

CommitteePlanned Parenthood admits to and celebrates participating in the murder of 300,000 children a year. Planned Parenthood wants you to believe this is compassionate care—a compassion that costs you close to 600 billion dollars in public funds. This money goes to support, among other things, extravagant salaries (Richards pulls in almost 600k a year). Richards freely admitted to upwards of $14,000 a day on travel, an amount equivalent to roughly $5,000,000 a year—including private charter planes, first class tickets, and lavish hotels—in exchange for 300,000 lives a year. THREE HUNDRED THOUSAND LIVES! I’ll echo what one commentator said, which I believe captures the reality: “This isn’t ‘women’s health’ folks. It’s your taxpayer dollars subsidizing Auschwitz.”

According to blogger Matt Walsh, Richards and Planned Parenthood not only lie about being compassionate and caring, they seem to lie about literally everything. At one point in the hearing, when asked to confirm a graph that was based on figures issued through PP’s own reports showing an alarmingly sharp decrease in non-abortion related “health services,” while at the same time showing an equally alarming increase in abortions, Richards was heard to respond that the graph “absolutely does not reflect what happens at Planned Parenthood.”

Propaganda, half-truths, outright lies, lavish parties, extravagant expenses, contradictions, denials, backroom dealings, and extensive political contributions are all part of daily life at Planned Parenthood. Nothing Cecile Richards or the Planned Parenthood behemoth says can ever be believed. Lies are business as usual at every clinic. Staff lie to the women who walk in the door every day, women who are perhaps unaware and who are falling for the greatest deception in human history.

After repeatedly claiming on the record that Planned Parenthood performs mammograms, Richards finally admitted that of the more than 600 Planned Parenthood clinics, zero conduct the procedure. Richards initiated this lie, one her supporters repeated over and over previous to her testimony.

Furthermore, Richards sought to defend Planned Parenthood’s claim that as a so-called “compassionate” healthcare provider, its abortion services are only three percent of total services. Congressional representatives attempted to analyze that number during the testimony, but Richards successfully evaded full exposure. To set the record straight, take a look at this analysis offered by former abortionist, now pro-life advocate, Abby Johnson. Following Johnson’s explanation, we easily see the deceptive nature of PP’s reporting. In actuality, the percentage of services that are abortion related is likely closer to at least 40 percent. Again, whom can we trust here?

Consistently Cecile Richards and her allies on the committee sought to derail the proceedings by returning to the undercover videos and Mr. David Daleiden. Their tactic was clear: Continue a smear campaign in an attempt to discredit and deflect the attention from Planned Parenthood. This strategy was largely deflated when it was revealed that a forensic analysis determined that the undercover Planned Parenthood videos were not manipulated or deceptively edited at all. Planned Parenthood’s own hired investigative team also concluded that there was no “widespread evidence of substantive video manipulation.” Two forensics investigations—one paid for by Planned Parenthood—have both confirmed the authenticity of the videos. Still, Cecile Richards and her allies in Congress repeated the claim that the videos were “doctored” despite the conclusions of these two separate investigations.

Where is the compassion for human life? When Richards, appearing clueless, was asked by one representative if a child born after a failed abortion would be provided care, she responded she’d “never heard of that circumstance happening.” Widespread news reports detailed how abortion survivors testified in front of this very same committee one week prior. I agree with blogger Matt Walsh when he speculates that it seems denying the existence of people who were just in the room was, in Richards’ estimation, a better strategy than admitting they’d let the child die right in front of them, as Planned Parenthood officials have testified in the past.

Richards was also forced to confirm that Planned Parenthood raked in 127 million dollars “in excess of revenue” last year. “Excess” revenue means profit. The “nonprofit” tax-funded Planned Parenthood actually earned over 100 million dollars of profit last year. So why are we, the American people, forced to provide any funding whatsoever to this organization that plies its trade, preys on the young and vulnerable, and will stop at nothing to carry out its agenda?

A moment of clarity came to me as I listened to comments made by Rep. Paul Gosar in the course of the proceedings. I’ll leave you to ponder them as you also contemplate your responsibility in seeing to it that Planned Parenthood is not only defunded but wiped off the face of the Earth. Trust me, Earth will be a better place without Planned Parenthood, and we will be a better people as we embrace life, rather than sit idly by as it is taken away from so many.

In the words of Rep. Paul Gosar: “The simple truth is that Planned Parenthood, masquerading as a nonprofit, has strategically developed a business model to profit off the death of innocent unborn babies. The recent videos released by the Center for Medical Progress have lifted the curtain on this horrific operation and exposed it to the American public. . . . Despite the ruthless accusations from Planned Parenthood and its accomplices claiming a ‘war on women,’ the only casualties of this ‘war’ are the millions of innocent babies who have had the life crushed out of them.”

Matt Wielgos is the chief communications officer at American Life League.