During a softball interview with Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards, MSNBC gave Richards the assist by using debunked pro-PP statistics in their chyron.
Richards was interviewed on “Morning Joe” Wednesday and the hosts avoided any difficult questions about the debate over abortion rights or about Planned Parenthood’s cancer-related services declining.
“From your point of view, what is [Republican’s] apparent obsession with Planned Parenthood?” Mike Barnicle asked helpfully.
“Are there places where Planned Parenthood is the only option?” Mika Brzezinski lobbed to Richards.
The only question related to abortion at all came from Willie Geist, who asked if Richards would ever consider President Trump’s proposal that Planned Parenthood stop providing abortions so they can continue to receive federal funding.
During Richards’ answer, MSNBC assisted her by putting up a chyron with a favorable, but false, statistic about Planned Parenthood.
“Data: Only 3% Of Planned Parenthood Services Go To Abortion Services,” the chyron incorrectly stated.
The idea that only 3 percent of Planned Parenthood’s services are abortions has been thoroughly debunked and even received three “Pinocchios” from The Washington Post’s fact checker.
Planned Parenthood unbundles all of the services it provides, so even if a woman comes in for one standard check-up but receives an STD test, a Pap smear, and a pack of birth control pills, she will be counted as receiving three services. (VIDEO: MSNBC Host Fudges Facts On Planned Parenthood)
As the Post explained, “The 3 percent figure that Planned Parenthood uses is misleading, comparing abortion services to every other service that it provides. The organization treats each service — pregnancy test, STD test, abortion, birth control — equally.”
“Yet there are obvious difference between a surgical (or even medical) abortion, and offering a urine (or even blood) pregnancy test,” the Post wrote. “These services are not all comparable in how much they cost or how extensive the service or procedure is.”
The true statistic, some estimate, is that abortion services provided are somewhere between 15 percent and 37 percent of Planned Parenthood’s overall services. (VIDEO: MSNBC Host Goes After The Daily Caller, Fails Miserably)
Even left-leaning Slate published an article calling the 3 percent statistic “the most meaningless abortion statistic ever.”
As that piece explains, Planned Parenthood receives at least a third of its income from abortion procedures, meaning those services are hardly a small or insignificant part of the organization.