CNN Says Bill Clinton’s War-on-Women History Is Only “Alleged,” But Claims Pro-Lifers Engage in One

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jan 4, 2016   |   12:47PM   |  

The media has spent years claiming the pro-life movement is engaged in some sort of war on women because it opposes abortion and funding the abortion industry. Everyone has seen countless stories and news reports on how pro-life Republicans are supposedly out of touch with women or hate women because they support protecting unborn babies from abortions.

That line of attack was successful against pro-life candidates in the 2012 presidential election and Planned Parenthood and other abortion activist groups successfully targeted Mitt Romney and Senate candidates with false ads saying they, too, oppose contraception and birth control — despite their numerous protestations that they merely opposed abortion.

Candidates in 2014 got more of the same — with millions of dollars of ads claiming they are anti-birth control.

In December, Hillary Clinton’s campaign brought out the worn-out “war on women” rhetoric to attack the pro-life senators.

“We’re not going to let them get away with it,” Clinton’s director of women’s outreach Mini Timmaraju told the Phoenix New Times on behalf of the presidential candidate.

“We’ve seen Arizona Republicans time and time again put politics first and jeopardize the health of women,” Timmaraju said. “When they attack women’s health, they attack America’s health… Hillary’s going to continue to stand with 2.7 million women and men who rely on Planned Parenthood.”

But, as Tom Blumer of Newsbusters notes, there’s a double standard when it comes to Bill Clinton and his actual war on women during the course of his political career. CNN can only bother to say that Clinton’s sordid sexual history is “alleged.” That’s fairer treatment than pro-life advocates ever receive:

Since last night, Matt Drudge has teased his link to CNN’s coverage of Hillary Clinton “heckler” Katherine Prudhomme O’Brien with the following headline: “Clinton heckled in NH by rape survivor.”

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The headline at CNN’s story by Dan Merica is quite different: “NH GOP lawmaker heckles Hillary Clinton over Bill Clinton’s sex scandals.” The headline difference is not unusual. What is unusual is that Merica’s article as currently posted never refers to O’Brien as a “rape survivor” (which, by the way, she has said since at least 2000). Since Drudge usually refers in some way to a story’s content when he writes his headlines, this opens up the possibility that earlier versions of Merica’s story did mention O’Brien’s rape survivor status, and that CNN censored it. What we do know is that CNN and Merica made sure that readers of their story wouldn’t know that Juanita Broaddrick credibly accused Bill Clinton of raping her, and that they treated Clinton’s one-man war on women sexual history as entirely “alleged” (bolds are mine):

Merica and CNN did this despite the fact that Clinton has admitted to much of what has been supposedly only “alleged” or has been legally found to have lied in defending himself.

In the final excerpted paragraph, Merica’s plainly written English lumps Lewinsky in with others who have “accused” Clinton of having affairs — as if that’s as far as her claims went. Hardly:

  • It is a historical fact that “Mr. Clinton lied under oath about his affair with Monica Lewinsky,” i.e., the affair wasn’t only “accused,” it was acknowledged.
  • It is also a historical fact that in 1999, a federal judge held President Clinton in contempt of court. The judge “specifically cited Clinton’s (false) assertions that he was never alone with Lewinsky and that he did not have a sexual relationship with the former White House intern.”

Failure to identify Katherine Prudhomme O’Brien as a rape survivor (even “self-described,” which might have been acceptable in the circumstances, depending on the underlying facts) would have gotten in the way of the obviously important exercise of minimizing the seriousness of Bill Clinton’s sordid one-person war on women. We can’t have that.