Obama backs out of Planned Parenthood gala Thursday: White House
Updated 04/24/2013 at 2:32 pm EST
PHILADELPHIA, April 24, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) - President Obama will no longer deliver the keynote address at Planned Parenthood's gala in Washington, D.C., as originally planned.
Obama had been widely criticized for attending the gala in the shadow of the trial of abortionist Kermit Gosnell, who stands accused of murdering several newborn babies after botched late-term abortions. Critics had also pointed to Planned Parenthood lobbyist Alisa LaPolt Snow's testimony before the Florida House apparently defending infanticide, as well as revelations of horrendous conditions at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Delaware.
White House spokesman Jay Carney announced that Obama would no longer be headlining the gala for the country's largest abortion provider at a press briefing this morning. He cited the president's desire to spent more time at a memorial ceremony for the victims of the West Texas, fertilizer plant explosion as the reason for the schedule change.
However, the president is slated to address Planned Parenthood supporters at a smaller event on Friday morning.
In a press release published just yesterday that announced the president's planned appearance at their gala, Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards heaped accolades on the president, saying: “President Obama has done more than any president in history for women’s health and rights.”
Planned Parenthood has admitted that it knew about conditions at Gosnell's "House of Horrors," but took no steps to report him to the authorities.
Pro-life activists had demanded that Obama cancel his appearance. In a statement, Lila Rose of Live Action News, had said: "Over the past few weeks, we have heard the brutal details of the slaughter of innocent human beings that goes on within the walls of many abortion clinics, including Gosnell’s ‘House of Horrors’ in Philadelphia and the ‘meat-market’ ‘assembly-line’ Planned Parenthood of Delaware.
“These accounts by former clinic staff have shell-shocked the nation and it is incumbent upon the President to reconsider his support for the abortion industry and Planned Parenthood, which last year profited from abortion $87 million dollars committing over 300,000 abortions,” she said.
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While Planned Parenthood has condemned Gosnell, pro-life activists have pointed out that Planned Parenthood seems to have no problem with aborting babies of the same age as those Gosnell aborted, even outside the womb.
Earlier this year Planned Parenthood lobbyist Alisa LaPolt Snow was asked during debate over a Florida bill banning infanticide, what Planned Parenthood would do if a baby was born alive after a botched abortion. “What would Planned Parenthood want to have happen to that child that is struggling for life?” asked Rep. Jim Boyd.
“We believe that any decision that’s made should be left up to the woman, her family, and the physician,” Snow replied.
Rep. Daniel Davis later asked, "What happens in a situation where a baby is alive, breathing on a table, moving. What do your physicians do at that point?”
"I do not have that information," she said. "I am not a physician, I am not an abortion provider, so I do not have that information.”
After a third representative pressed Snow replied, “That decision should be between the patient and the health care provider.”
Planned Parenthood subsequently issued a statement saying that babies born alive after failed abortions would be given medical treatment.
President Obama had himself, while serving as a senator in Illinois, repeatedly opposed a measure that would have required doctors to provide medical care to babies born alive during botched abortions.
Obama has long had a close relationship with Planned Parenthood, which donated $15 million to his re-election campaign last year.
During the recent election cycle he repeatedly touted Planned Parenthood on the campaign trail, and condemned Republican lawmakers for seeking to defund the abortion giant. On election day, Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards went door-to-door canvassing for the president.