The hits keep on coming for the Donald.
In response to several folks seemingly misunderstanding what the 2016 GOP frontrunner said on CNN on Tuesday morning about Planned Parenthood funding, Donald Trump has issued a statement to Breitbart News exclusively that makes it crystal clear where he stands: While the organization conducts abortions, they should receive no taxpayer dollars.
That means Trump supports one of two pathways forward for Planned Parenthood: Either they stop conducting abortions, or they lose all their taxpayer subsidies.
Trump said in his exclusive statement to Breitbart News on Tuesday evening
While Planned Parenthood is engaging in the despicable practice of abortion — in addition to then selling aborted baby body parts to the highest bidder — the organization should receive no taxpayer dollars. The liberal left wing always claims that Planned Parenthood isn’t about abortion and that it’s about other general areas of women’s health. I am totally in favor of women’s health and if they can put their money where their mouth is, and stop the abortion services at Planned Parenthood entirely, we can talk about government funding for many of the other aspects of the organization that do a lot of good.
There’s nothing Trump said in his CNN interview that suggests he is open to funding Planned Parenthood with taxpayer dollars while the organization continues conducting abortions.
“The problem that I have with Planned Parenthood is the abortion situation. It is like an abortion factory, frankly,” Trump said on CNN. “And you can’t have it. And you just shouldn’t be funding it. That should not be funded by the government, and I feel strongly about that.”
When asked about the other stuff Planned Parenthood does—not the abortion services—Trump said in the CNN interview that he would be okay with funding that.
“What I would do when the time came, I’d look at the individual things they do, and maybe some of the individual things they do are good,” Trump said on CNN. “I know a lot of the things are bad. But certainly the abortion aspect of it should not be funded by government, absolutely.”
Also, quite clearly–since he is Donald Trump after all–he’s definitely not backing down from his previous push for Republicans in Congress to do everything in their power up to and including shutting down the government to stop Planned Parenthood from getting any more money as long as they remain in the abortion business. As far as anyone can tell, it’s unlikely Planned Parenthood is about to stop conducting abortions–so Trump believes they need to lose their money from the taxpayers.
What’s perhaps the most interesting development here is, now that Trump has set the record straight—and made clear that he supports no tax money going to the organization while it’s in the abortion business—he seems to have exposed the entire political class yet again. All his haters crawled out of the woodwork to attack him to argue he suggested he’d be okay with funding Planned Parenthood at all while the organization is still in the abortion business, and he just exposed them all yet again.
Trump was hammered by several major conservatives like Live Action’s Lila Rose and ForAmerica’s David Bozell—whose organization’s chairman Brent Bozell is now representing the presidential campaign of Trump competitor Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) after endorsing Cruz—and directly from Trump competitor Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY). In addition, several from the GOP establishment who already dislike Trump began attacking him—and somehow, perhaps inadvertently, Planned Parenthood itself praised what it thought was Trump’s stance.
The misconception is that many people thought Trump was saying that he thinks it’s okay for the government to fund the women’s health matters as long as taxpayer money doesn’t cover abortions. Trump’s position, in fact, is that taxpayers should not fund Planned Parenthood at all if the organization is providing abortions—a position that actually undercuts the left’s argument that abortion is just a small percentage of the service the group provides.
If it’s so small a deal, Trump is challenging, why not just get rid of it? Of course, Planned Parenthood is never going to not conduct abortions—so Trump’s consistent and previously public positions, which he’s reiterating again here for Breitbart News, rings even truer: No taxpayer dollars for the group. Trump has also made clear previously that he’s willing to do everything it takes to cut off the flow of money to Planned Parenthood, including escalating to the level of a standoff or impasse that could result in a government shutdown if the GOP Congress and President Obama’s White House don’t come to an agreement.
David Bozell said:
Donald Trump simply must be clear about his position on taxpayer-funding of Planned Parenthood if he expects to be taken seriously by conservative voters. Last week Mr. Trump said he would strip $528 million of Planned Parenthood funding immediately, even if it meant a government shutdown fight with Democrats. Today on CNN, Mr. Trump claimed Planned Parenthood was an ‘abortion factory’ but does ‘some good things’ and waffled on the funding question. This ambiguous position gives voters pause. Just ask President Romney, who denied he was ever pro-choice, despite the videotape evidence. Voters seek and expect clarity on this issue. It must be made crystal clear by every candidate in the GOP field that Planned Parenthood’s taxpayer-funded lifelines provided by the federal government must be cut off. There’s nothing good about an organization that mutilates and sells the body parts of aborted babies. Defund it completely, now, and open an immediate congressional investigation.
Trump’s vacillation on Planned Parenthood funding is deeply troubling, and reveals an ignorance about their horrific abortion practices–their killing over 320,000 children a year, and bartering to sell the body parts of those they abort. It’s obvious from Mr. Trump’s comments that he has not watched the Planned Parenthood videos released by Center for Medical Progress. That is the only way he could recommend to continue funding this abortion conglomerate that is totally unnecessary and any organization that engages in these human rights abuses does not deserve a penny of tax payers’ money. It would be better spent on health services that would save the lives of women and babies. I challenge Mr. Trump to watch the videos.
Despite Rose’s statement, Trump has previously publicly stated—when he called for Republicans in Congress to do anything and everything to defund Planned Parenthood—that he has in fact watched the videos.
“Maybe I should just let him debate himself…Trump Open To Continuing Taxpayer Funding of Planed Parenthood,” Paul, who has, as part of a clear coordinated campaign decision, decided to start attacking Trump very publicly, Tweeted with a link to a Breitbart News article on Trump’s CNN comments.
The Daily Beast—which previously falsely accused Trump of raping his ex-wife Ivana—ran a headline claiming Trump is “Planned Parenthood’s favorite Republican.” In the article, Daily Beast writer Betsy Woodruff quoted Planned Parenthood spokesman Eric Ferrero oddly praising Trump—again based entirely on the misconception that somehow Trump is okay with tax dollars going to the organization while it continues to conduct abortions.
“Donald Trump seems to have realized that banning all abortions, shutting down the government, and defunding Planned Parenthood are extreme positions that are way too far outside the mainstream for even him to take,” Ferrero said in Woodruff’s Daily Beast piece. “We hope that the rest of the GOP field will wake up and reconsider their extreme and unpopular positions on defunding preventive care, abortion bans, and the other economic issues that women and their families care about.”
Several folks from the right of center who have had it out for Trump from the beginning of his campaign seized the Daily Beast article as some kind of assurance they were right that Trump is no conservative.
“Oh boy,” read a Tweet from Fox News Contributor Erick Erickson, the head of Red State, who disinvited Trump to his Red State Gathering this weekend amid Trump’s spat with his Fox colleague Megyn Kelly after Kelly’s aggressive questioning of Trump during the debate last week in Cleveland.
Erickson’s Salem Communications colleague–Guy Benson at Town Hall Magazine–sent out several Tweets attacking Trump over this. Salem Communications has come under fire not just for Erickson’s actions recently, but now ahead of the next debate is facing questions about whether its nationally syndicated radio host Hugh Hewitt can be fair as a moderator when he said that Trump doesn’t have the “temperament” to be president.
“Will Donald Trump now be called a ‘RINO’ by his supporters?” pollster Frank Luntz, who held a focus group on Fox News post-debate that argued Trump was somehow damaged by the debate, Tweeted.