Role of Planned Parenthood in race raises issues
Planned Parenthood may poor-mouth when its government funding is on the line, but that hasn’t stopped the abortion giant from spending lavishly on politicians who promise to keep the taxpayer dollars coming.
Planned Parenthood’s political arm, the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, was the second-biggest spender on the Democratic side of the ledger in the special election for Georgia’s 6th Congressional District, putting more than $734,000 behind Jon Ossoff.
The only group that spent more was the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which poured $4.9 million into the race.
Michael J. Norton, president and general counsel of the Colorado Freedom Institute, a religious-liberty legal firm, said Planned Parenthood’s involvement in political races raises a “huge ethical issue.”
“Planned Parenthood is trying to influence the outcome of races so as to line its pockets with more taxpayer dollars for abortion and abortion-related services,” he said. “It doesn’t square with Planned Parenthood’s argument that cutting off federal funds is going to deprive women of necessary health care.”
Planned Parenthood, which receives more than $500 million in annual taxpayer funding, could not be reached for comment. The group’s Action Fund is funded by donations, which are kept legally separate from the general revenue.
The abortion giant said it spent $30 million last year in support of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, more than double what it spent in 2012.
Planned Parenthood similarly failed to win a series of special elections earlier this year.
In the race for the Montana House seat vacated by Rep. Ryan Zinke, Planned Parenthood launched a six-figure ad buy touting Democrat Rob Quist as a champion for women. Even after Republican Greg Gianforte was cited for misdemeanor assault against a reporter, Mr. Quist lost by more than 5 points.
And despite heavy backing from the abortion industry, Mr. Ossoff failed to grab the seat vacated by former Rep. Tom Price. Mr. Trump carried Georgia’s 6th District by just 1.5 points, but pro-life Republican Karen Handel won the seat by nearly 4 points.
Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the pro-life Susan B. Anthony List, said the race turned out to be a referendum on Planned Parenthood.
“Although America’s largest abortion business, Planned Parenthood, spent six figures in support of her opponent Jon Ossoff, Karen’s record of courageous leadership won the day,” Ms. Dannenfelser said in a statement.