The 2016 presidential race is a never-ending series of studies in contrasts, but few have been as clarifying as the one that's playing out this week. Failed Hewlett Packard CEO Carly Fiorina began the week by spewing out buckets of lies about Planned Parenthood and her own record as a businesswoman, all in the name of helping her all-white-male comrades bone women out of access to health care. Then, along came Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards to drop truth bombs on said dudes, and show how a successful CEO behaves.
There were many highlights from Wednesday's Congressional kangaroo court hearing on Planned Parenthood, at which Cecile Richards graciously but firmly sat for what amounted to a five-hour Republican campaign ad video shoot. What they were looking for were headlines like "Trey Gowdy Grill Planned Parenthood’s President Cecile Richards Ferociously!"
What they got was, for example, Richards calmly comforting a practically weepy Gowdy, who was just so sure that Richards was being mean to him!
The great thing about video is that you can actually slide it back a few seconds and hear Cecile Richards say "I appreciate that people have a lot of different views on the issue of abortion," and that "at Planned Parenthood, we take the position that we trust women to make their own decisions about their pregnancies."
The fundamental flaw in the media's Coke or Pepsi coverage of the abortion rights debate is that Cecile Richards isn't pushing one or the other, she's protecting choice, including the choice to believe abortion is wrong and not to get one, or to believe it is wrong and still try and have the women in your own life get one. If Trey Gowdy showed up at a Planned Parenthood clinic, Cecile Richards would make certain that, despite his opposition, he'd get that yeast infection cleared up in no time.
She would also explain how going to a doctor works the same for women as it does for men, if someone like Jason Chaffetz was confused by the process of being referred to a radiology clinic to get radiology work done:
"Planned Parenthood is a women's health center, just like where I go for my breast exams every year. If you need a mammogram, you're referred to a radiological center, and that's how women actually receive their care."
And if you try to fling bullshit at her, Cecile Richards will drop a bomb on you, as she did when Chaffetz tried to work in a piece of anti-choice propaganda. Watch it to the end for Chaffetz' priceless reaction:
"My lawyer is informing me is source of this is from Americans for Life, which is an anti-abortion group. So I would check your source."
By way of contrast, while successful CEO Cecile Richards was defending women's choices Wednesday, failed CEO Carly Fiorina was being proven a liar in her quest to deny them. The video Fiorina referenced during the debate turned up, and it is not, in fact, a Planned Parenthood video, does not feature any hint of harvesting, and is probably of a miscarriage, not an abortion. Other than that, she was spot on.
Carly Fiorina is right about one thing: women are a majority of this country, but in poll after poll, they support Cecile Richards and her organization. Cecile might not be running for president, but she sure gets my vote.