NBC Still Ignoring Planned Parenthood Sting, Despite House Vote to Defund

You can lead a network to a story, but you can't make it report. Certainly not if the story reveals the disturbing truth about one of liberalism's sacrosanct institutions - the largest abortion-provider in the United States. The broadcast networks' coverage of the scandal and potential defunding of Planned Parenthood by the House of Representatives has been disgraceful.

On Feb. 1, pro-life activist group Live Action released a video covertly filmed at a New Jersey Planned Parenthood office. The footage documented a Planned Parenthood employee giving advice to a man posing as a pimp about obtaining abortions and birth control for the underage foreign prostitutes he traffics.

Within two days, Fox and CNN, along with The New York Times, The Washington Post and other print outlets, had reported on the story. Not so for ABC, CBS and NBC. In fact, it wasn't until Feb. 8 - a week after the story broke - that CBS finally reported on the video. In that report, chief legal correspondent Jan Crawford called the video "troubling," but CBS was sure to include a statement from Planned Parenthood calling Live Action "an extreme group." ABC and NBC, on the other hand, remained mum.

Within 10 days, the networks were given another chance to inform their viewers that an employee of Planned Parenthood, which receives $363 million annually from taxpayers, had knowingly aided what she thought was a human sex trafficker.

On Feb. 18, the U.S. House of Representatives took up debate on a measure that would cut federal funding to Planned Parenthood. All three networks reported that Rep. Jackie Speier, D-Calif., rose to the organization's defense and told her colleagues that she had a late-term abortion for medical reasons. Those network stories also reported that the House did indeed vote to withhold funds to Planned Parenthood. But only ABC's Jonathan Karl mentioned the related video scandal.

"For the new Republican Congress, Planned Parenthood is a prime target," Karl said. "Especially after recent videos released by an anti-abortion rights group, including one showing a Planned Parenthood employee answering questions by someone requesting information for a 14-year-old prostitute."

ABC became the second of the three networks that eventually bowed to reality and reported on Live Action's video, however NBC news has yet to even mention the subject.

Matthew Philbin
Matthew Philbin
Matt Philbin is Managing Editor of MRC Culture