During the last Republican presidential debate Donald Trump repeated the oft-stated claim that abortions constitute just 3 percent of the business the Planned Parenthood does.
Here’s what Trump said:
As far as Planned Parenthood is concerned, I’m pro-life. I’m totally against abortion, having to do with Planned Parenthood. But millions and millions of women — cervical cancer, breast cancer — are helped by Planned Parenthood.
So you can say whatever you want, but they have millions of women going through Planned Parenthood that are helped greatly. And I wouldn’t fund it.
I would defund it because of the abortion factor, which they say is 3 percent. I don’t know what percentage it is. They say it’s 3 percent.
However, even the pro-abortion Washington Post admits the 3 percent number is “a big lie.” The Post concluded that Planned Parenthood is “misleading,” “using meaningless and incomplete comparisons to make their argument, and the public should be wary . . . .”
To arrive at that 3 percent figure, Planned Parenthood does some fudging and misdirection. Planned Parenthood depreciates the role abortion plays by defining its “services” in such a way that it avoids accounting for their time and expense. A single pregnancy test is designated by Planned Parenthood as a “service” and thus given equal weight to a far more time-consuming and expensive surgical abortion procedure, another Planned Parenthood “service.” Likewise, each pack of birth control pills is considered a service and carries the same weight in the calculation as an abortion.
The Washington Post Fact Checker notes:
When all services are counted equally, abortion procedures do account for 3 percent of Planned Parenthood’s total services.
But there are obvious differences between these services. For example, a first trimester abortion can cost up to $1,500, according to the Planned Parenthood Web site. Yet an emergency contraceptive pill costs around $45 and a urine pregnancy test costs around $10 at a pharmacy. An abortion is a different type of procedure than a vasectomy, or testing for sexually transmitted infections or diseases, or a vaccine for human papilloma virus (HPV), and so forth.
While each service is listed separately, many clients received multiple services. A woman may get a pregnancy test, birth control and a pap smear, but she would be counted three times, once for each service, in the annual report.
“Such cracked reasoning could be used to obscure the purpose of any organization.
The sponsors of the New York City Marathon could count each small cup of water they hand out (some 2 million cups, compared with 45,000 runners) and say they are mainly in the hydration business.
Or Major League Baseball teams could say that they sell about 20 million hot dogs and play 2,430 games in a season, so baseball is only .012 percent of what they do.
Supporters of Planned Parenthood want to use its health services as leverage to preserve its abortions, as if you can’t get one without the other.
Of course, this is nonsense.”
Cutting through the blatant factual distortions painted by Planned Parenthood’s deceptive 3% figure, WaPo uses Planned Parenthood’s own statistics to expose the abortion giant’s lies. It notes that according to Planned Parenthood’s own data, “patients who received abortions would account for 12 percent of total patients,” and “abortions comprised 14 percent of [Planned Parenthood clinic] visits.”
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