Call the "Ripley's Believe It or Not" people.
Politifact, the alleged fact-checking site which has for years almost invariably insisted on calling obvious truths stated by Republicans and conservatives "Half True" at best and often worse, while taking flat-out lies by leftists and pretending they contain some element of truth, has issued a "Pants on Fire" rating on Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid's outrageously false claim last week that Planned Parenthood is "the only health care that a significant number of women get," specifically contending that this is the case for 30 percent of women.
The only mild refuge Politifact's Louis Jacobson gave Reid was a bit of a watered-down headline. Reid isn't just "way off," Louis. He's lying, on the Senate floor (more on that shortly; bolds are mine throughout this post):
Harry Reid is way off on claim that 30% of women rely only on Planned Parenthood for health care
During Senate floor debate on July 30, 2015, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., urged lawmakers to focus on consequences for women who rely on Planned Parenthood for health care beyond abortions if the federal funding is cut off.
Planned Parenthood "is the health care backbone for American women during their lives," Reid said. "In fact, it's the only health care that a significant number of women get. About 30 percent of women, that's their health care."
... We started by doing some basic math.
You know Reid's in trouble when Politifact starts using math. The site all too often deals in generalities when it attempts to help dig leftists and Democrats out of deep holes, but not this time.
According to the 2013 Census Bureau population estimate, there were about 161 million women in the United States, of whom 131 million were age 15 or over -- the primary constituency for Planned Parenthood. Thirty percent of that number is about 39 million women.
Did Planned Parenthood serve 39 million women who had no other health care options? Not even close.
According to the most recent Planned Parenthood annual report, the organization saw 2.7 million patients in 2013 ...
Equally problematic, there's no indication in Planned Parenthood’s data that each of the 2.7 million patients had no other health care resources to rely on, as Reid said was the case.
When we checked with Reid’s office, a spokesman said that the senator was speaking off the cuff and had meant to refer to a different statistic. That is a statistic -- often cited by Planned Parenthood itself -- is that "one in five American women has chosen Planned Parenthood for health care at least once in her life." But that’s not what Reid said.
... Reid, making off-the-cuff remarks, got the talking point wrong. In this case, he really got it wrong. We rate the statement Pants on Fire.
Reid was wrong by one-third (20 percent vs. 30 percent) on what he supposedly intended to say — and Planned Parenthood's 20 percent "health care" statement is suspect, simply because women who have been using it only to obtain birth control pills or devices are not receiving "healthcare." What birth control is, as Marie Hilliard stated so eloquently in Crisis Magazine last year, is "human control of female fertility through chemical mutilation of a natural healthy function of women" (there are also methods which are to varying extents mechanical, but they also don't qualify as "healthcare"). Whether or not someone believes that using birth control is a legitimate option to prevent pregnancy, it's not "healthcare" as the dictionary defines it ("the field concerned with the maintenance or restoration of the health of the body or mind") — at least until dictionary publishers give in to pressure and ruin it.
Reid was far more than 90 percent wrong in what he actually said, because, as Politifact noted, it's quite obvious that many if not most of the 2.7 million patients seen by Planned Parenthood have some other option for other aspects of their health.
Mark this day, as it's a rare one. Politifact issued a "Pants on Fire" rating to a leftist.
Reid's has a habit of knowingly lying on the Senate floor out of pure political calculation.
Knowing that he's safe from legal action on the Senate floor, Reid in 2012 outrageously and falsely claimed that 2012 GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney hadn't paid taxes for ten years.
Questioned by the CNN's Dana Bash in March, shortly after he announced his retirement, Reid defended his blatant lie thusly:
"Romney didn't win, did he?"
He can't leave the Senate soon enough.
Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.