Last night, Georgia residents took to the polls for a special election to replace Tom Price, who was chosen by Donald Trump to serve as Health and Human Services Secretary. The race was between Democrat newcomer Jon Ossoff, who didn’t live in the district he was running to represent, and Republican Karen Handel. Handel’s name was much more familiar — she was the proverbial fall guy in the Komen-Planned Parenthood scandal. Handel was the senior vice president of public policy for Susan G. Komen for the Cure when the breast cancer advocacy organization decided to stop giving grants to Planned Parenthood (which does not perform mammograms), a decision which was met with a swift and vicious bullying campaign from the abortion giant. Komen reversed their decision, and Handel was out of a job.
Handel is a pro-life Republican who, in addition to her time spent with Komen, was also Georgia’s first ever Republican Secretary of State. Ossoff, on the other hand, is a pro-abortion Democrat who promised to protect Planned Parenthood during the campaign. Planned Parenthood, of course, stood behind Ossoff, while Ossoff ran attack ads against Handel that slammed her for cutting off funding for Planned Parenthood — claiming that Handel took money away from women that would be used for cancer screenings and breast exams. In reality, Planned Parenthood only provides a minute number of these screenings, but the truth clearly didn’t matter.
Georgia voters evidently didn’t fall for it, though; Handel won last night, defeating Ossoff in the most expensive race in House history. But this wasn’t just a loss for Ossoff and for Democrats; it was a staggering loss for Planned Parenthood, as well.
Planned Parenthood was heavily invested in seeing Ossoff win. Ossoff spent tens of millions of dollars in an attempt to win the district seat, but one of his largest donors was Planned Parenthood, which gave over $800,000 to his campaign. Planned Parenthood also tried to help mobilize supporters and encouraged them to vote for Ossoff. But their efforts failed — and after the results came in, Planned Parenthood didn’t hide its disappointment:
While Ossoff had Planned Parenthood behind him, urging voters to support him so that he could fight for Planned Parenthood to continue receiving taxpayer funding, Handel had the backing of the pro-life Susan B. Anthony List, which contacted voters about Handel’s opposition to abortion, as well as her desire to eliminate taxpayer funding from Planned Parenthood.
It seems that Ossoff’s pro-abortion stance didn’t resonate with voters, no matter how much energy and money Planned Parenthood poured into this race. And it’s for this reason that Planned Parenthood lost last night, too. It should serve as a sign for other politicians: Americans don’t support taxpayer-funded abortion, and they aren’t buying Planned Parenthood’s tactic of branding themselves as a health care provider.
It’s time to stop defending Planned Parenthood, and start listening to what Americans actually want.
Editor’s Note: All op-eds are the opinion of the writer, and not necessarily the official position of Live Action.