MSNBC hosts Ali Velshi and Stephanie Ruhle lobbed a number of softball questions at Planned Parenthood’s new president on Wednesday, allowing her to push the abortion giant’s popular talking points.
Velshi began the segment by asking Lena Wen to explain the “misinformation” Republicans are supposedly spreading in the wake of a New York measure lifting restrictions on late-term abortions.
“What’s the truth here?” he asked.
Wen said it’s important to “use the right terminology” adopted by Planned Parenthood, which is to refer to late-term abortions as “abortions later in pregnancy.” She then argued that women who get them only do so for medical reasons.
During her response, MSNBC flashed a graphic onto the screen that read, “Abortion misconceptions: Women can have an abortion up until birth — killing a child.”
“First, we need to use the right terminology,” Wen said. “This is about abortions later in pregnancy, is what we’re referring to. About 99% of abortions occur before 21 weeks and those that occur later, after 24 weeks, or later in pregnancy are because of very challenging circumstances when something in the pregnancy has gone very wrong.” (RELATED: Planned Parenthood Reveals Shocking Number Of Abortions Performed In A Year)
Wen’s response did not address the fact that women in New York can now opt to get an abortion up until the time of birth if it is for medical reasons or because the unborn baby is deemed unable to survive outside the womb. Her claim that late term abortions are pursued only for medical reasons also contradicts evidence that many women who seek late term abortions do so for other reasons, such as logistical problems accessing an abortion or a dispute with the father over whether to abort.
Late-term abortions are typically done by vacuuming the fetus out of the mother’s womb or pulling it out piece by piece with forceps, at a point in development an unborn baby can feel pain, scientific research indicates.
Velshi followed that up with another softball question, asking Wen to explain why abortion rates are down, allowing her to reiterate a couple more Planned Parenthood talking points. She attributed the drop to sex education and access to birth control and claimed 90% of what Planned Parenthood does is preventative measures.
Planned Parenthood’s claim that abortion is just a small percentage of what it does has been debunked by The Washington Post, and a version of it deemed “the most meaningless abortion statistic ever” by Slate. The abortion giant carries out more abortions than any other health care provider. In 2018, Planned Parenthood said its clinics conducted more than 332,000 abortions — a record high.
Wen went on to accuse President Trump and “anti-women’s-health politicians” of “lying” about late-term abortions by calling them infanticide:”They’re trying to conflate infanticide with abortions later in pregnancy, and we have to say look, infanticide is illegal. No one is defending infanticide.” (RELATED: Media Accuses Trump Of ‘Incendiary’ Lies About Abortion)
She was likely referring to Trump’s recent criticism of Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam’s support for a bill that would allow doctors to “abort” a baby after it’s born alive. He also criticized the New York measure.
“Lawmakers in New York cheered with delight upon the passage of legislation that would allow a baby to be ripped from the mother’s womb moments before birth,” he said. “These are living, feeling, beautiful babies who will never get the chance to share their love and dreams with the world.”
Regardless of the medical circumstances, both bills allow doctors to brutally end the life of a fully developed baby.
Correction: An earlier version of this post incorrectly identified Ali Velshi and Stephanie Ruhle’s show as on CNN. Their show is on MSNBC.