Media softball: Four hard-hitting questions Politico failed to ask of Planned Parenthood

Image: Alexis McGill Johnson CBS interview July 2019

Politico’s weekly Recast Q+A piece, “Planned Parenthood v. White Supremacy,” failed to ask hard-hitting questions about the accusations leveled against Planned Parenthood by hundreds of staffers who have accused the abortion corporation of a past and present steeped in white supremacy and racism. Politico’s immigration correspondent Sabrina Rodriguez granted cover to Planned Parenthood president Alexis McGill Johnson instead of engaging in actual journalism, allowing the corporation to continue to spread its message of abortion expansion.

But it is clear from the interview that Politico’s provocative title was merely clickbait. Instead of addressing its own racist history, Planned Parenthood deflected to attack pregnancy resource centers (its competition) and the Hyde Amendment, a pro-life rider which has for decades prevented federal taxpayers from being forced to fund most abortions. Only recently, abortion advocates have begun to insist that Hyde is “racist.”

So, what questions should Politico have asked in its puff piece? Four key things

1. Does rescinding Hyde benefit Planned Parenthood financially and increase abortions?

In the interview, McGill Johnson praised the Biden/Harris administration for “ending the domestic gag rule and the global gag rule” which allows taxpayer funding of organizations that refer or commit abortions overseas, as well as passing the “American Rescue Plan Act” which is essentially a slush fund for Planned Parenthood.

“We want to see Congress repeal the Hyde Amendment,” Planned Parenthood’s president added. Live Action News previously documented how — despite the abortion lobby’s attempts to claim poor women need the public to pay for their abortions — statistics show that when abortion is subsidized by taxpayers, abortions increase.

This means Planned Parenthood stands to gain financially should its friends in Congress succeed in doing away with Hyde, something Politico failed to point out.

2. Didn’t Planned Parenthood voluntarily leave the Title X family planning program after Trump’s rule change?

“There are these things called crisis pregnancy centers that, when Planned Parenthood was forced to leave Title X, they were able to receive resources from the federal government that literally their entire job is to mislead people around their pregnancies if they have questions around termination,” Planned Parenthood’s president falsely claimed (emphasis added).

Politico failed to set the record straight again. Politico itself previous reported that Planned Parenthood voluntarily left the Title X program to prioritize abortion over the health of low income clients,

Image: Politico Headline Planned Parenthood refuses funds TitleX 2

Politico Headline Planned Parenthood refuses funds TitleX

3. What are the motives behind Planned Parenthood’s attack on PRCs?

Planned Parenthood, which profits from the dehumanization of preborn children and the fears of their mothers — regularly attacks pro-life pregnancy centers, which now outnumber Planned Parenthood facilities nationwide.

In the video interview between Rodriguez and McGill Johnson, the Planned Parenthood president referred to “crisis pregnancy centers” as “misleading.”

Rodriguez failed to push back, failed to ask for proof of McGill Johnson’s claims, failed to question any underlying motives for attacking non-profit pregnancy centers which offer their services for free, and failed to grant pregnancy centers a rebuttal — all while Planned Parenthood’s president went on and on about combatting “misinformation.”

Image: Politico correspondent Sabrina Rodriguez gives puff interview with Planned Parenthood prez Alexis McGill (Image: Twitter)

Politico correspondent Sabrina Rodriguez gives puff interview with Planned Parenthood prez Alexis McGill (Image: Twitter)

Yet, Planned Parenthood, which receives half a billion taxpayer dollars annually, elevates abortion over parenting and has been called out on its own rampant “misinformationabuse, scandals, and fraud. Yet it never seems to really pay the price.

Planned Parenthood has been outed for discrimination against pregnant employees, for aiding sexual abusers and sex traffickers, for giving women medical misinformation, and for Medicaid fraud.

But Politico could not be bothered to mention these abuses.

4. What about Planned Parenthood’s historical and present-day accusations of racism?

“The 104-year-old Planned Parenthood is still reckoning with its relationship to white supremacy,” Politico’s Sabrina Rodriguez began in her piece before dropping the subject completely. “There are still major disparities in access to reproductive health care among women of color. Equitable policies, such as expanding access to affordable abortion care for low-income and women of color, are still essential,” Rodriguez went on to write.

Image: Planned Parenthood staffers admit PP founded in racism and steeped in white supremacy (Image: screen from website SavePPGNY)

Planned Parenthood staffers admit PP founded in racism and steeped in white supremacy (Image: screen from website SavePPGNY)

In response, McGill Johnson told Politico, “We are a 104-year-old organization. There is no organization that’s as old as we are that is not founded and steeped in conversations and realities around white supremacy…”

That was it — no follow-up needed, apparently. Yet, after 104 years of systemic racism, one might expect to hear some sort of information relating to Planned Parenthood’s racist and eugenic history dating back to its white supremacist founder and “trailblazer,” Margaret Sanger.

Politico could have asked why — for decades — Planned Parenthood downplayed the racist beliefs of Sanger, lauding her as a heroine. Or why the abortion organization failed to remove Sanger from a place of honor until July 2020, even after hundreds of past and current Planned Parenthood employees published an open letter which alleged the abortion organization was “founded by a racist, white woman” and had a “present steeped in white supremacy.” Politico could have asked for more details about Sanger’s meeting with members of the Ku Klux Klan and her board member ties to the Klan.

White Supremacist Margaret Sanger heroine Planned Parenthood

White Supremacist Margaret Sanger heroine Planned Parenthood

Politico could have asked why Planned Parenthood honors multiple eugenics leaders within their organization in addition to Sanger — like past president Alan F. Guttmacher (for whom the Guttmacher Institute, Planned Parenthood’s former research arm and “special affiliate,” is named). Politico could have asked about Planned Parenthood’s direct historic ties to the American Eugenics Society as well as organizations and leaders who promoted and funded eugenic sterilization programs, which targeted minorities, especially Black men and women, with forced sterilizations.

Politico could have also questioned McGill Johnson about the numerous Planned Parenthood employees who told Buzzfeed News they had recently witnessed “open racism” and endured “segregated offices” and “unequal treatment” of Black and minority employees at multiple Planned Parenthood centers across the country. Politico could have mentioned how Planned Parenthood’s present “systemic racism” was acknowledged by multiple affiliates, and an internal audit confirmed that Planned Parenthood Federation of America has a racism problem.

But… Politico didn’t ask any of those questions.

Planned Parenthood has a practically unsullied reputation not because it deserves it, but because the media — like Politico — has failed to do the job of journalism when it comes to this organization for decades.

In the past decade, Planned Parenthood has committed more than 3.3 million abortions while taxpayers were forced to send this self-admitted racist organization nearly $6 billion. Instead of condemning Planned Parenthood’s 104 years of racism and demanding that this racist organization be defunded, Politico lacked the courage or conviction to do either.

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