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Tony Perkins / September 30, 2015

Planned Parenthood’s Cecile the Lyin’

While businesses start closing the books on another fiscal year, Congress is fighting to close the books on taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood — permanently. Caught in a scandal with an unprecedented “ick” factor, organization President Cecile Richards took the stand for the first time to try to justify the grisly baby harvesting ring her group has been hiding.

While businesses start closing the books on another fiscal year, Congress is fighting to close the books on taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood — permanently. Caught in a scandal with an unprecedented “ick” factor, organization President Cecile Richards took the stand for the first time to try to justify the grisly baby harvesting ring her group has been hiding.

Relying on tired talking points, Richards insisted the footage of her employees hawking human body parts were “doctored” — a claim that will be tough to make now that forensics have validated them. The tapes’ authenticity was confirmed and released to the press early [yesterday] morning, as part of an Alliance Defending Freedom effort. Since David Daleiden released the first video, the “edited footage” line has been the Left’s go-to defense — which never made much sense, since Planned Parenthood apologized for its staffers’ tone, only to insist later that the staffers never said any such thing.

According to cybersecurity and forensic experts, all 10 “full-footage videos” from Center for Medical Progress (CMP) “show no evidence of manipulation or editing.” Yet Richards, in her carefully rehearsed testimony, insisted that the real villain was Daleiden, which is ironic since all he did was reveal something she now claims to be “proud” of. Proud, apparently, of cutting into tiny baby bodies when their hearts are still beating. Proud of putting women through riskier abortion procedures to get better, more valuable baby organs. Or was it pride that her medical directors were negotiating higher prices for the little livers, hearts, and brains?

Honestly, maybe this is the problem. Cecile Richards and the entire network of Planned Parenthood supporters are proud. In a world where President Obama said “nobody’s pro-abortion,” the single largest recipient of taxpayer dollars is. “Their desire for more of taxpayer dollars is just insatiable,” said committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah). “[And] that’s money that’s not going to women’s health care.” To a slide showing an uptick in the group’s abortion procedures, Richards claimed that it “did not reflect what’s happening at Planned Parenthood.”

Confronted about the parts-for-profits scheme, she replied that it was a “minuscule” part of Planned Parenthood’s work. But it might not represent a “minuscule” breaking of the law. At this weekend’s Values Voter Summit, Senator Rick Santorum recounted his recent interview on CNN. “Well, the procedures that we saw described in these videos I know very well, because they were partial-birth abortions. And he (the CNN host) says, well, okay, but, you know, how do you know that that’s against the law? I said, because I wrote the law.”

The bottom line is the bottom line. Planned Parenthood wants their money. They’ll sue the states for it, overbill for birth control to get it, lie to women to get it, even carve up tiny human babies for it. And why do liberals stand for it? Because the 13,000 community health centers that could provide better care do not provide something else: $20 million in Democratic political contributions over the last two election cycles alone. The President’s party will do anything to survive politically — even if it means jeopardizing the survival of women and innocent children.

At some point, maybe now, that reckless and callous approach will cost them. At the very least, it may cost Planned Parenthood. In both chambers, members are moving to end this forced partnership between taxpayers and the abortion giant through the budget reconciliation process. Under it, the Senate can limit debate on a budget bill to 20 hours and pass it with 51 votes instead of the 60 that are normally required to end debate. This year’s provision would cut funding for Planned Parenthood for one year in Medicaid, the group’s largest funding stream.

If pro-lifers succeed, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that it would save taxpayers an estimated $235 million. And who knows how many lives? Contact your leaders and ask them to take every possible step — reconciliation or otherwise — to stop the flow of government dollars to a group that exalts cash over care and “choice” over child.

Hunter on the Hunted

If an everyday American stopped someone from raping a child, they’d be praised! In the Obama military, they’re punished. To the shock of a country, Sergeant 1st Class Charles Martland is living proof. The Green Beret winner of two Bronze stars was just informed that he’d be discharged from the Army in November for intervening in the brutal sexual abuse of a young boy.

Tied to posts and beds for two weeks at a time and raped, this boy’s mother pleaded with U.S. soldiers to help her. When she tried to stop it herself, she was beaten. Through an interpreter, she told the story to Sgt. Martland, who confronted the Afghan police commander. When he laughed it off, saying “it’s just a boy,” Martland was so overcome that he shoved and kicked the policeman. “I physically threw him through our front gate and off our camp,” he acknowledged in his first public statements this week.

But the Pentagon is apparently more concerned about the alliance with local officials than the well-being of local Afghans, because they’ve booted this American hero from the service. “Kicking me out of the Army is morally wrong,” Martland said, “and the entire country knows it.”

On the heels of a New York Times article that exposed the years-long barbarism, Martland explains that “Our Afghan Local Police were committing atrocities and we were quickly losing the support of the local populace. The severity of the rapes and the lack of action by the Afghan Government cause many of the locals to view our ALP as worse than the Taliban.”

Despite being defended by a U.S. commander in Afghanistan for what the Green Beret called “a moral obligation to act,” Martland was denied appeal. Fortunately, California Republican and Iraq veteran Rep. Duncan Hunter is doing everything he can to keep Martland’s career intact. (Read his powerful op-ed here.) In letters to Defense Secretary Ash Carter and the inspector general of the DOD, Hunter argued, “To say that you’ve got to be nice to the child rapist because otherwise the other child rapists might not like you is one of the stupidest things I’ve ever heard — totally insane and wrong.”

Show your support for Duncan Hunter and Martland by signing FRC’s petition to the House and Senate Armed Services Committee. What America needs is more men of conviction — not less. If American soldiers have to look the other way when innocent children are tortured, what exactly are we fighting for? Click here to agree.

A Holy See Change on Religious Liberty

As Pope Francis flew away from the United States, he put more than geographical distance between its President and the Vatican. After a powerful visit, the pope’s first in America, the gap between the two leaders’ positions grew even larger on the fundamental right of religious liberty.

Asked if he supported officials who refused to abide by court-created same-sex marriage laws (people like Kim Davis), the pope was unequivocal: “I can’t have in mind all cases that can exist about conscientious objection but yes, I can say [that] conscientious objection is a right that is a part of every human right,” he said. “If a person does not allow others to be a conscientious objector, he denies a right. … Conscientious objection must enter into every judicial structure … Otherwise we would end up in a situation where we select what is a right, saying ‘this right that has merit, this one does not.’”

Unfortunately, the pope’s convictions didn’t seem to rub off on President Obama, who said goodbye to Francis one day — and the next warned Christians that it was futile to try to protect religious liberty. At an LGBT gala for the Democratic National Committee, the president called the GOP’s support for natural marriage a ploy to get more votes (which is an interesting concession for someone who argues it’s a losing issue). A graduate of the Chai Feldblum School of Religious Intolerance, President Obama went on, “Religious freedom doesn’t grant us the freedom to deny our fellow Americans their constitutional rights.”

Unlike same-sex marriage, which appears nowhere in the Constitution, the First Amendment is very clear on whose rights are being violated in this debate. It was a sad contrast to the president who stood by the pope and claimed that “people are only truly free when they can practice their faith freely. Here in the United States, we cherish religious liberty.”

I suppose we could all use a copy of the president’s lexicon, since he’s apparently working with very different definitions than most of us. As far as the White House is concerned, the practice of religious liberty is restricted to the four walls of our churches. If that’s freedom, then you could’ve fooled us.

This is a publication of the Family Research Council. Mr. Perkins is president of FRC.

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