Political reporter Jackie Calmes, a prime defender of Democrats from her New York Times perch, suggested in Wednesday's edition that an undercover video exposing Planned Parenthood harvesting body parts of aborted babies would mean "political danger" for Republicans if it means the abortion "issue is revived."
An undercover video made by a pro-life activist group caught Dr. Deborah Nucatola of Planned Parenthood -- a massive abortion provider that receives taxpayer money -- explaining how her organization procures and sells organs from aborted babies.
Yet Calmes not only played the shocking revelations as a purely political issue -- as opposed to a moral or ethical one -- but suggested any emphasis on the gruesome practice would backfire on Republicans. (The Times treated another moral issue, the killing of four Americans in Benghazi, Libya, as a partisan issue as well.) Calmes even managed to avoid describing Planned Parenthood as an abortion provider, saying only that its "wide-ranging health services include breast cancer tests." The word "abortion" came up once -- in a story that was all about abortion -- and even that was in the phrase "abortion opponents."
Abortion opponents on Tuesday renewed their campaign against Planned Parenthood, with immediate impact among Republicans in Congress and the presidential race, after the release of a video that surreptitiously captured an official from the group explaining how it provides fetal parts to medical researchers.
The video, from a little-known activist group called the Center for Medical Progress, appeared to have been shot in a California restaurant in July 2014. It shows a doctor from Planned Parenthood, over a lunch with red wine, answering questions from two people off-camera posing as potential purchasers of tissue from aborted fetuses. The doctor discusses with them, sometimes flippantly, the body parts most in demand.
While the video, which was circulated on the Internet, alleges that Planned Parenthood is guilty of the crime of selling fetal remains, the official tells her questioners more than once that the cost, $30 to $100, is reimbursement for clinics’ expenses.
And these two paragraphs sound like nothing more than the desperate wishful thinking of a pro-choice partisan:
As conservatives condemned Planned Parenthood for what they called “selling baby parts,” the reaction threatened to incite the sort of opposition that has led congressional Republicans in recent years to try to shut down the government unless Planned Parenthood was stripped of federal money.
But those fights were ultimately seen as backfiring against Republicans, especially given broad support for Planned Parenthood among suburban women. That suggested the political danger for the party if the issue is revived.
A beneficiary, the Susan G. Komen organization, has contributed to Planned Parenthood, whose wide-ranging health services include breast cancer tests.
The identical article actually appeared twice in at least one of the paper's print editions, once on A16 and again on A17. The stronger headline was "Video Accuses Planned Parenthood of Crime." The subhead: "Allegations, that are denied, of selling fetal body parts."