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Abby Johnson Challenges Planned Parenthood Prez to Debate

by Steven Ertelt | New York, NY | LifeNews.com | 3/3/11 2:00 PM

National

Abby Johnson is the former director of a Texas Planned Parenthood who converted to the pro-life position after being asked to participle in an ultrasound-guided abortion. Now she wants to debate the head of the abortion business.

Johnson, the author of Unplanned, sent a letter to Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards requesting to engage in a public debate on whether the nation’s largest abortion-performing organization should continue receiving taxpayer funding from the federal government. The House of Representatives has already approved the Pence Amendment, which would yank all federal funding from the abortion agency.

“I write to formally challenge you to a public debate, through a mutually agreed upon media forum, on the issue of whether or not Congress should continue to provide taxpayers’ dollars to Planned Parenthood.  This issue has received a great deal of media coverage in recent days and weeks,” Johnson opened.

Johnson, in her letter, according to a CNS News report, indicated her participation in a debate would offer a unique perspective “as a former insider who is now here to tell the truth about how Planned Parenthood operates.”

“For many years I was part of the deception that taxpayer funds don’t finance abortions at Planned Parenthood clinics, the deception that Planned Parenthood wants to reduce the number of abortions, and the deception that Planned Parenthood’s highest priority is women’s health and safety,” Johnson said in her letter CNS obtained that went to Richards. “You continue to repeatedly perpetuate these deceptions and the public deserves to know the truth.”

Not expecting her challenge would receive a warm response from Richards, Johnson laid out her case against taxpayer funding of the abortion business.

“Given one-third of Planned Parenthood’s funding comes from taxpayers, and that Planned Parenthood’s own reporting notes it performs over 324,000 abortions per year, it defies all logic and common sense to say taxpayers are not financing abortions at these clinics,” she said.

Johnson also talked about the problems at Planned Parenthood:

Recent undercover investigations by Live Action have unveiled disturbing revelations of Planned Parenthood’s willingness to aid and abet self-identified sex traffickers – to the extent that the New Jersey Attorney General has opened an investigation.  There have been repeated instances, covered by wide variety of news accounts, of Planned Parenthood providing abortions to underage girls without reporting names and information to law enforcement despite being required to do so for the purpose of pursuing charges of statutory rape.  Just this week, it was revealed in court proceedings in Kansas, a Planned Parenthood clinic in that state failed to report 164 instances of underage abortions to law enforcement, which likely allowed numerous statutory rape cases to go uninvestigated, much less prosecuted.

“In difficult economic times, when working families are stretched, taxpayers already bearing a heavy burden, and the national debt exceeds $14 trillion, the debate over whether or not Congress should continue to annually provide over $300 million in taxpayer money to Planned Parenthood is pivotal,” Johnson concluded.

The conservative news web site called Planned Parenthood about the debate request and did not receive a response for comment.

The full text of the letter follows:

Ms. Cecile Richards
President
Planned Parenthood Federation of America
434 West 33rd Street
New York, NY 10001
March 1, 2011
 
Dear Ms. Richards,
 
I write to formally challenge you to a public debate, through a mutually agreed upon media forum, on the issue of whether or not Congress should continue to provide taxpayers’ dollars to Planned Parenthood.  This issue has received a great deal of media coverage in recent days and weeks.
 
I worked for Planned Parenthood for eight years at its Bryan, Texas clinic.  For over two of those years I was clinic director and in 2008 I was named Planned Parenthood’s “employee of the year” for Texas.  Given my experience with Planned Parenthood, I believe I can give the public a needed perspective – as a former insider who is now here to tell the truth about how Planned Parenthood operates.
 
For many years I was part of the deception that taxpayer funds don’t finance abortions at Planned Parenthood clinics, the deception that Planned Parenthood wants to reduce the number of abortions, and the deception that Planned Parenthood’s highest priority is women’s health and safety.  You continue to repeatedly perpetuate these deceptions and the public deserves to know the truth. 
 
Given one-third of Planned Parenthood’s funding comes from taxpayers, and that Planned Parenthood’s own reporting notes it performs over 324,000 abortions per year, it defies all logic and common sense to say taxpayers are not financing abortions at these clinics. 
 
Recent undercover investigations by Live Action have unveiled disturbing revelations of Planned Parenthood’s willingness to aid and abet self-identified sex traffickers – to the extent that the New Jersey Attorney General has opened an investigation.  There have been repeated instances, covered by wide variety of news accounts, of Planned Parenthood providing abortions to underage girls without reporting names and information to law enforcement despite being required to do so for the purpose of pursuing charges of statutory rape.  Just this week, it was revealed in court proceedings in Kansas, a Planned Parenthood clinic in that state failed to report 164 instances of underage abortions to law enforcement, which likely allowed numerous statutory rape cases to go uninvestigated, much less prosecuted.
 
In difficult economic times, when working families are stretched, taxpayers already bearing a heavy burden, and the national debt exceeds $14 trillion, the debate over whether or not Congress should continue to annually provide over $300 million in taxpayer money to Planned Parenthood is pivotal.  Your organization turned a profit of over $63 million according to is most recently available annual report, yet Planned Parenthood somehow continues to call itself a “non-profit.”  The deceptions must stop.  I look forward to your prompt response.
 
Sincerely,
Abby Johnson