The Corner

Politics & Policy

Fifth Circuit Ruling Dismantles Planned Parenthood Talking Points

(File photo: Lucas Jackson/Reuters)

A ruling issued tonight by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has torpedoed several of the abortion-rights movement’s key talking points in defense of Planned Parenthood.

The case dealt with the Texas Health and Human Services Commission’s decision to terminate the state’s Medicaid provider agreements with Planned Parenthood affiliates across the state. The state based its decision to remove Planned Parenthood from the list of eligible Medicaid providers in large part on a series of undercover videos released in the summer of 2015 showing footage of Planned Parenthood executives and doctors admitting to illegally profiting from the sale of the fetal tissue of aborted babies.

At the time the videos were released, Planned Parenthood and its many defenders in the pro-choice movement repeated ad nauseam that the videos had been “heavily [and] deceptively edited.” This same line was often parroted uncritically by media outlets in their coverage of the videos.

In its ruling tonight, the Fifth Circuit not only affirmed the state’s right to terminate its agreement with Planned Parenthood affiliates, but also confirmed that the videos were undoctored. The court noted that an independent forensic firm’s review of the undercover footage found “that the video was authentic and not deceptively edited.” This directly refutes Planned Parenthood’s own false claim.

The ruling also mentioned parts of the video footage in which Planned Parenthood executives had admitted to illegally altering abortion procedures to obtain intact fetuses whose organs could then be sold to medical research firms for greater profit. This included finding ways to circumvent the federal ban on partial-birth abortion, whether by changing the way they performed late-term procedures or by signing a form saying they had not “intended” to retrieve an intact fetus.

Tonight’s decision is a win for the pro-life effort to remove Planned Parenthood’s Medicaid funding at the state level, but it also affirms evidence showing that Planned Parenthood doctors and affiliates did indeed break federal law.

Most Popular

White House

Another Warning Sign

The Mueller report is of course about Russian interference in the 2016 election and about the White House's interference in the resulting investigation. But I couldn’t help also reading the report as a window into the manner of administration that characterizes the Trump era, and therefore as another warning ... Read More
World

What’s So Great about Western Civilization

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is Jonah Goldberg’s weekly “news”letter, the G-File. Subscribe here to get the G-File delivered to your inbox on Fridays. Dear Reader (Redacted: Harm to Ongoing Matter), One of the things I tell new parents is something that was told to me when my daughter still had that ... Read More
Film & TV

Jesus Is Not the Joker

Actors love to think they can play anything, but the job of any half-decent filmmaker is to tell them when they’re not right for a part. If the Rock wants to play Kurt Cobain, try to talk him out of it. Adam Sandler as King Lear is not a great match. And then there’s Joaquin Phoenix. He’s playing Jesus ... Read More
White House

The Mueller Report Should Shock Our Conscience

I've finished reading the entire Mueller report, and I must confess that even as a longtime, quite open critic of Donald Trump, I was surprised at the sheer scope, scale, and brazenness of the lies, falsehoods, and misdirections detailed by the Special Counsel's Office. We've become accustomed to Trump making up ... Read More
U.S.

Supreme Court Mulls Citizenship Question for Census

Washington -- The oral arguments the Supreme Court will hear on Tuesday will be more decorous than the gusts of judicial testiness that blew the case up to the nation’s highest tribunal. The case, which raises arcane questions of administrative law but could have widely radiating political and policy ... Read More