MSNBC Host Thomas Roberts Calls Abortion Clinics “Choice Providers”

National   |   Jeffrey Meyer   |   Jul 31, 2013   |   9:30AM   |   Washington, DC

For years, MSNBC has made it clear where it stands on the issue of abortion in America: on the side of promoting abortion rights advocates against any restriction or regulation on the taking of unborn life. Unsurprisingly, one of MSNBC’s most fervent abortion activists is Thomas Roberts, who apart from using his daily MSNBC show to promote gay marriage, has taken it upon himself to rail against any abortion safety laws as limiting “choice.”

But on his July 30 program, Roberts took things a step further with Orwellian language designed to avoid the A-word. Clinics were instead “choice providers,” according to Roberts. [See video below. MP3 audio here.]

This all happened during Roberts’s chat with Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL pro-choice America, on North Carolina’s newly-passed abortion clinic regulations, . In response to such new measures, Roberts alarmed viewers that t the new laws would result in only one “clinic in the state for women in North Carolina for seeking out choice.”

Roberts began the segment by falsely claiming that, “North Carolina is now the latest Republican-led state to restrict a woman’s access to abortion.” Much like the rest of MSNBC’s abortion segments, Roberts ignored the fact that nothing in the new law prevents an abortion clinic in North Carolina from spending money to meet the new safety standards approved by the North Carolina legislature, but instead frets that, “there is only one that currently meets that benchmark.”

Roberts continued to spew misinformed statements about the North Carolina bill, asking Ilyse Hogue, “How do you respond to that with such a dramatic closure of access to choice providers for women?” Again, Roberts failed to tell his liberal audience that abortion clinics can choose to spend money to meet safety standards or ask their liberal supporters to donate money to provide for safety upgrades, but to claim that this law would “limit access” is false.

Furthermore, Roberts’ laughable claim that abortion clinics are “choice providers” is absurd.  The only choice an abortion clinic facilitates is for a woman to kill her unborn child. Calling an abortion clinic a choice provider is disingenuous and shameful. Of course the NARAL president did not once challenge Roberts’ false statements as she promotes abortion, instead choosing to work in another talking point to slam the Tar Heel State’s Republican governor:

Not only did he [Gov. Pat McCrory] break a sacrosanct campaign promise not to restrict choice but he is actually playing politics with women’s lives.

Of all the campaign promises that politicians supposedly break, in the eyes of Ilyse Hogue, abortion-related campaign promises are the only ones deemed “sacrosanct.” That’s right, it was downright unholy and wicked of McCrory to go back on his word to not sign into law new legislation to restrict abortion and thereby spare unborn children their lives, according to Hogue’s logic.

It goes without saying, unfortunately, that Roberts failed to bring on anyone to defend McCrory and pro-life state legislators nor to challenge Hogue’s point of view. That’s because, when it comes down to it, MSNBC treats its alliance with the pro-abortion Left as sacrosanct.

See relevant transcript below.



July 30, 2013

11:42 a.m. Eastern

THOMAS ROBERTS: North Carolina is now the latest Republican led state to restrict a woman’s access to abortion. Under the new law signed by the Governor Pat McCrory yesterday abortion clinics will now have to meet the same standards as outpatient surgical centers. The governor says he signed this bill with the health and safety of women in mind but critics say the law does the exact opposite. Joining me now is Ilyse Hogue president of NARAL. Ilyse it’s good to have you here. And as you know, under this bill itself, 16 of the state’s clinics they don’t meet these new standards of being these ambulatory surgical centers to make that mark they’re going to have to invest over a million dollars. So there is only one that currently meets that benchmark which means that this is going to be the only clinic in the state for women in North Carolina for seeking out choice. But in a statement about the bill and the signings itself Governor McCrory says the law does not further limit access and those would contend it does are more interested in politics than the health and safety of our citizens. How do you respond to that with such a dramatic closure of access to choice providers for women?

ILYSE HOGUE: Well, Thomas, I don’t think you have to go very far to see that Americans actually trust our mothers, our sisters, our daughters, and, quite frankly, our doctors more than we trust politicians in these countries this days and governor McCrory just proved why. Not only did he break a sacrosanct campaign promise not to restrict choice but he is actually playing politics with women’s lives. And one of the things we have seen in North Carolina is despite what you feel about abortion as a medical procedure, the voters in North Carolina are outraged at the way these bills passed attached to a motorcycle safety bill, passed by a governor who said that he would not restrict abortion. 80% of north Carolinians a couple of weeks ago said they were outraged by the way these restrictions were going through. And it begs the question of what McCrory and the GOP in North Carolina afraid of? They don’t want to actually have honest conversations about health because they know if we were having these conversations we would actually be talking about increasing access to the medical care that women need and increasing access to contraception increasing access to accurate sex education and not sneaking these bills through in the middle of the night.



ROBERTS: Ilyse you talk about how this got through. Again as you mentioned it was snuck into a motorcycle bill. But I do want to remind everybody about the campaign promise that you talk about. Here is what McCrory said on the campaign trail. Take a listen.

UNKNOWN WOMAN: If you’re elected governor, what further restrictions on abortion would you agree to sign? Start with you Mr. McCrory.


UNKNOWN: All right. You can’t really do a follow-up for that one.

ROBERTS: Can’t really do a follow up with that one Ilyse as we see there. A pretty buttoned up answer with none. So what are the internal pressures in North Carolina? And also are states like Texas now the role model of what we saw happen there? Now we have the snowballing of what’s taken place in North Carolina.

HOGUE: I think we are seeing governors being held hostage to an extreme agenda, an extremely base that has been amplified through redistricting and what we saw North Carolina suppression of voters’ rights. Look, these governors, these politicians know that they are outside of the mainstream on these issues. That’s why they are resorting to things like protecting themselves against accountability at the ballot box by suppressing voters in 2014. They know that they can’t win when they are on the wrong side of these issues and I think we are going to see that play out in all 36 governors’ races in 2014.

ROBERTS: Ilyse Hogue with NARAL. Ilyse great to have you here. Thanks for your time. We will continue to watch these stories along with you.

LifeNews Note: Jeffrey Meyer writes for Newsbusters.