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Five Takeaways from Cecile Richards interview with George Stephanopoulos

by | Jul 27, 2015

By Dave Andrusko

Richards1-998x574  You wouldn’t expect a former Clinton lackey like ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos to exactly pin PPFA President Cecile Richards to the mat with tough questions, like the kind real journalists might ask. But despite Richards’ filibusters and repetitious answers,  Stephanopoulos did address many of the main issues that we can hope congressional probes will be allowed to investigate.

Here are five takeaways from the “exclusive” interview with Richards.

#1. She likes the word “highly.” The videos are “highly edited,” “very highly edited,” “highly selectively edited,” and “highly doctored.” By contrast, PPFA is highly wonderful, highly credible, highly indignant, and highly highly.

#2. Did I forget to mention that the two undercover videos that have PPFA scrambling are “highly edited”? In addition to that, what you see is “taken out of context.” Even when Stephanopoulos tries to talk about Dr. Mary Gatter, who talked of using “less crunchy [abortion] techniques” to secure intact baby organs, Richards answer is this is “taken out of context.”

If you were to inject truth serum into Richards, I’m guessing by “out of context” you’d learn does not mean inaccurate. Because Dr. Gatter and Dr. Deborah Nucatola said all the appalling things they said. (If anybody wanted stuff edited out, I’m guessing it’s Richards.) What Richards means is that we’re not supposed to pay any attention that itsy bitsy part of the PPFA fiscal pie but rather all the good work they do.

#3. Less than (actually fewer than) five PPFA clinics harvest “fetal tissue,” a term of art that sweeps in livers and skulls and lungs and hearts. Let’s see if that proves to be as accurate as #2 (and, for that matter, #1). In any event, Richards again tells us these “donations” are to be applauded because they are used “for life-saving research.” (To the usual usuals—Alzheimers’ and Parkinson’s–Richards even threw in Ebola!)

#4. Richards categorically denies that the abortion technique is altered to extract intact organs. Really? Let’s find out. When PPFA officials talk with state and/or congressional investigators, will their response be something along the lines of “It depends on what the meaning of ‘alter’ is”?

#5. In addition to “highly” and “out of context,” Richards also likes “absolutely.” How much money changes hands—and for what “services”—in this nauseous trade is yet to be determined, although the comments of Drs. Nucatola and Gatter are intriguing. Here’s one give and take (thanks to Mollie Hemingway of The Federalist)

Do such partnership improve the finances of the clinic, asked Stephanopoulos? “Absolutely not,” Richards replied. Twice.

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