1. Planned Parenthood has fewer patients but more abortions

By Bradford Richardson, The Washington Times, May 31, 2017, Pg. A7

Planned Parenthood saw fewer patients but performed more abortions last year, according to its latest annual report.

The report, released Tuesday, is normally published at the beginning of each calendar year, but was almost six months late this time around. It coincides with Republican efforts to divest Planned Parenthood’s annual taxpayer funding of more than $500 million to clinics that do not perform abortions.

The 2015-16 report shows Planned Parenthood performed 328,348 abortions, up from 323,999 the previous year. The number of abortions also outpaced the number of breast exams, 321,700, that Planned Parenthood said it performed.

Meanwhile, the number of patients who visited Planned Parenthood continues to decline, despite increased taxpayer funding.

The abortion giant reported seeing 2.4 million patients in fiscal 2015, down from 2.5 million the previous year.


2. Trump administration draft rule rolls back birth-control coverage for religious employers

By Ariana Eunjung Cha, The Washington Post, May 31, 2017, Pg. A3

The Trump administration has drafted a rule that would allow religious employers to stop covering birth control in employer health plans.

The free-contraceptive mandate was one of the most controversial components of the Affordable Care Act signed into law by President Barack Obama in 2010.

[T]he measure has been a target of dozens of lawsuits by organizations that argue it goes against their religious beliefs. One such group, the 178-year-old Little Sisters of the Poor, took their fight to the Supreme Court, but the high court ultimately kicked the decision back to the lower courts.

President Trump this month invited the Little Sisters of the Poor to join him as he signed an executive order to “address conscience-based objections to the preventive-care mandate.” The draft rule, reported by the New York Times, appears to be the result of that order.


3. Vatican Scraps Plan for Pope to Go to South Sudan This Year

By Reuters, May 30, 2017, 9:03 AM

The Vatican said on Tuesday it had scrapped tentative plans for Pope Francis to make a visit this year to South Sudan, which has been hit by civil war, famine and a refugee crisis.

Vatican spokesman Greg Burke said the trip “was not for this year” but did not say when it might now take place.

Church leaders in the country said they had expected the pope would visit the capital, Juba, probably in October, but the Vatican had never announced the trip officially.

Burke did not give a reason for the cancellation of the plans but Vatican and Church sources said it was a combination of security concerns and logistics.


4. Planned Parenthood’s Long-Delayed Annual Report Is Here

By Alexandra DeSanctis National Review, May 30, 2017, 4:42 PM

After a six-month delay, Planned Parenthood has finally released its annual report for the 2015–16 fiscal year, which ended on June 30, 2016. In other words, Planned Parenthood took nearly an entire year to assemble a 35-page document, most of which is PR pabulum about the group’s supposedly essential role in U.S. politics and the health-care industry.

Here are the three most egregiously false claims from the new report.

1. The CMP videos were “heavily edited” and “widely and resoundingly discredited.”

Both of these claims have been fully disproven, both by forensic analysis and by a 16-month congressional investigation.

2. U.S. women will lose essential care if Planned Parenthood is defunded, not just abortion, which is only 3 percent of the group’s services.

This tired, bogus statistic has been debunked numerous times — including by left-leaning outlets such as Slate and the Washington Post. Despite repeating the 3 percent statistic, the new report lists 328,348 abortions in the U.S. during the 2015–16 fiscal year, up nearly 5,000 from the figure provided in its previous report. The corporation is the largest abortion provider in the U.S., performing one-third of our country’s abortions each year.

At the same time that the group downplays its role in the abortion industry, it also massively exaggerates its commitment to providing services such as prenatal care and cancer screenings. In its 2014–2015 report, Planned Parenthood claimed to have provided upwards of 17,000 prenatal services. In 2015–16, that number dropped to just over 9,000. Earlier this year, Live Action team members called 97 Planned Parenthood facilities and found only five clinics that provided prenatal care; the majority of the others repeatedly insisted that Planned Parenthood doesn’t provide prenatal care at all, as it specializes in abortion.

3. The vast majority of Americans, and especially young people, unequivocally support Planned Parenthood and abortion access.

While a majority of Americans support the legal right to abortion, especially early in pregnancy, a slew of recent polls have found that Americans on the whole support abortion restrictions later in pregnancy, and a majority consistently oppose federal funding of abortion. For instance, a poll from late 2016 revealed that nearly two-thirds of Americans support legislation prohibiting abortions after the 20th week of pregnancy, including almost 80 percent of Millennials.