All pro-lifers should download and read Americans United for Life’s outstanding new report, “The Case for Investigating Planned Parenthood,” which Kathryn highlighted in her interview with Charmaine Yoest. The report is a tour de force. It is 180 pages of evidence that Planned Parenthood has violated pro-life parental-involvement laws, failed to report child sexual abuse, and cannot properly account for millions in government grants.
What is perhaps most shocking is that, despite ample evidence of misconduct, federal funding to Planned Parenthood has increased significantly. In the report, AUL does a fine job showing that since the late 1990s, 1) federal funding to Planned Parenthood has nearly doubled, and 2) Planned Parenthood has performed consistently more abortions since that time. However, their analysis could have been expanded upon. A recent Guttmacher analysis shows that the abortion rate among low-income earners has significantly increased since 2000, even though the incidence of abortion has fallen for nearly every other demographic group.
Could the increase in federal funds to Planned Parenthood be responsible for this increase in the abortion rate among low-income women? Money is fungible, and the federal funds that Planned Parenthood receives could certainly free up other money to subsidize abortions for low-income earners. Furthermore, there is a very broad consensus among both economists and public-health researchers that publicly funding abortion increases abortion rates.
Right now, the big challenge for AUL and the pro-life movement is to get the mainstream media to give this report the attention that it deserves. Unfortunately, the mainstream media typically only gives sporadic coverage to misconduct within the abortion industry. Perhaps this thorough documentation of Planned Parenthood’s misuse of public funds, criminal misconduct, and corruption of minors will convince some fair-minded media outlets to give Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers some much needed scrutiny.
— Michael J. New is an assistant professor of political science at the University of Alabama and a fellow at the Witherspoon Institute in Princeton, N.J.