Nice Try, Republicans! Smear Videos Helped RAISE Money For Planned Parenthood

After conservatives released a series of four highly controversial videos attacking women’s health organization Planned Parenthood for making profits from aborted fetal tissue, it seems that Planned Parenthood is having that last laugh.

The first video featured a Planned Parenthood having a heavily doctored conversation to make it seem as though the organization was selling off the tissue of aborted fetuses. Planned Parenthood hit back, disproving the video’s accuracy, but conservatives continued to release three more strategically manipulated videos. The fourth video depicts actors posing as researchers speaking to Planned Parenthood medical director Dr. Savita Ginde. This video came from Center for Medical Progress, who may now be in legal trouble for posing as a company.

Vicki Cowart, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains, addressed the smear video:

“We want to acknowledge that hearing laboratory conversations about research out of context can be jarring, especially when the conversation is being manipulated for the purpose of attacking women’s health care.”

Dawn Laguens, Executive Vice President of Planned Parenthood, revealed that Planned Parenthood has now embarked on an aggressive media strategy with a PR firm. She added:

“We are doing anything we can to expose these extremists so they have less power and can’t hide and sneak around so easily. We’re working to change the culture of shame and abuse and harassment of women who are seeking reproductive health care, abortion or otherwise.”

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The White House has also called the group responsible for the sting videos “extremists on the right.”

Fortunately, the conservatives didn’t win. After the doctored videos were released, funding for Planned Parenthood has actually spiked! Laguens explained:

“The benefit of having been a women’s health care provider for 99 years, and to being somebody who’s been there in the lives of 1 in 5 American women, is that when people come after Planned Parenthood, people tend to not like that, and it actually has the opposite effect. More people send money, more people ask what they can do to help, more people come to us for health care.”

Planned Parenthood has said time and time again that abortions are not funded under the $528 million per year that the organization receives from the government. Instead, those government dollars go to crucial women’s health practices such as birth control, Pap tests, and STD treatment – all of which have nothing to do with abortion.

Still, Republicans aren’t taking the hint and continue to double their efforts. Congressional Republicans have introduced a stand-alone bill to strip Planned Parenthood of federal aid, and the Senate Republicans intend on voting on the bill in a few days. GOP presidential candidate Ted Cruz has already suggested shutting the government down in order to defund Planned Parenthood, and 18 House Republicans have said they “cannot and will not support any funding resolution … that contains any funding for Planned Parenthood.”

President Barack Obama isn’t having it, though. Following the Republicans’ threat, Obama sent this message via his spokesperson Josh Earnest:

“A rider that would on a wholesale basis defund Planned Parenthood, which is the proposal of some Republicans in the House, is certainly something that would draw a presidential veto.”

Featured image courtesy of Jason Taellious via Flickr.