Planned Parenthood CEO Won’t Agree That Planned Parenthood is ‘Core to Abortion in America’

Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile

Richards.  (AP) 

(CNSNews.com) – Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards would not directly agree with the idea that Planned Parenthood’s operations are at the “core to abortion in America.”

During a Jan. 5 interview on CNN, host Erin Burnett asked,  “Do you agree, Cecile, that Planned Parenthood is core to abortion in America?”

Richards said that while abortion is “important, it’s a legal service that women need access to in this country. ”

She added that she wanted to focus on House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) and Vice President-elect Mike Pence trying to “end access to everything that would prevent unintended pregnancy in this country, including family planning services.”

(Video screenshot from Center for Medical Progress.)

Burnett and Richards were discussing, overall, the Republicans’ plan to end all federal subsidies to Planned Parenthood.

During the discussion, Burnett cited the abortion provider’s annual report, saying CNN “compared the number of abortions that Planned Parenthood performed, more than 327,000 — this is the year 2013 that we could find — in the states that report numbers you provided half of those abortions.”

Given those numbers, Burnett asked, “I mean do you agree Cecile, that Planned Parenthood is core to abortion in America?”

“Well we provide abortion services,” Richards acknowledged. “But we also provide millions of other services to folks and, again, I think it’s really important, Erin, yes, we provide abortion, we think it’s important. It’s a legal service that women need access to in this country.”

“But what Speaker Ryan is trying to do here and what Vice President Pence has been trying to do,” she said,  “is end access to everything that would prevent unintended pregnancy in this country, including family planning services. And that’s the real irony here.”

Richards went on to cite the doubling of the maternal mortality rate in Texas after the State cut funding to Planned Parenthood in 2011, concluding that what the Republicans are trying to do “will, if anything, drive up the rate of unintended pregnancy in this country and have exactly the opposite impact of what supposedly they intend.”    

The fact-checking website Snopes.com took on this claim in August, calling the correlation between maternal death and defunding Planned Parenthood “unproven.”

They concluded, “Researchers did not demonstrate a direct correlation between reproductive health laws in Texas and the maternal mortality rate.”

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