Michele Bachmann promotes video smear of Planned Parenthood [UPDATE]
Is it real, or is it propaganda?
Michele Bachmann wants to defund Planned Parenthood, and she wants you to think that Planned Parenthood supports child sex trafficking.
She's directing her Facebook visitors to a debunked video from anti-abortion activist Lila Rose, and her Live Action crew, to make her case.
In it, Live Action asserts:
"A Planned Parenthood manager in New Jersey coaches a man and a woman posing as sex traffickers how to secure secret abortions, STD testing, and contraception for their female underage sex slaves."
"This proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that Planned Parenthood intentionally breaks state and federal laws and covers up the abuse of the young girls it claims to serve," Live Action says. "Time and time again, Planned Parenthood has sent young girls back into the arms of their abusers."
Here's the video:
But there's a problem with Live Action's story: Planned Parenthood reported the possibility of the sex trafficking ring to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder and the FBI a week ago, before it realized that Rose's collaborators had posed as criminals to make the video.
And there's another problem, as Media Matters and others have pointed out: Live Action aggressively edited the video. It came from just one clinic, in New Jersey, out of the 850 clinics Planned Parenthood runs. And nobody knows for sure what actually transpired there.
The New Jersey clinic and 11 others around the country were visited by a man during a week-long span in January. Once inside, he told clinic workers a lie about seeking services for a sex trafficking ring involving underage girls that he managed. As he spoke with clinic workers, a secret video camera caught the conversation.
When Planned Parenthood realized that Live Action was trying to set up its clinic workers, spokesman Stuart Schear issued a scathing denunciation.
"Falsely claiming sex trafficking to health professionals to advance a political agenda is an astoundingly cynical form of political activity," he said. "When Planned Parenthood learns of an operation that exploits young women, we vigilantly work with law enforcement authorities to uncover and stop this abhorrent activity."
AP contacted Rose, who would only say that the Planned Parenthood story was "interesting." She wouldn't confirm being the woman behind the curtain pulling the levers, but she did say that Live Action had a project in the works.
Rose released the heavily edited video yesterday. And Bachmann linked to it right away:
UPDATE: National anti-abortion rights groups are doubling down on the video, and launching a well-choreographed national push to try and push a bill through Congress to take away Planned Parenthood's funding.
Previous Michele Bachmann Coverage:
- Michele Bachmann looked into the wrong SOTU camera on purpose
- Meghan McCain calls Michele Bachmann "a poor man's Sarah Palin"
- Michele Bachmann SOTU behind-the-scenes video
- Michele Bachmann vs. Paul Ryan: The videos
- CNN justifies airing Bachmann's SOTU speech
- Bachmann flunks history of slavery and the Founding Fathers
- Michele Bachmann wants to be president
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