Wednesday, September 23, 2015
The videotape in question was put out by the Center for Medical Progress, an anti-abortion group that went undercover to record Planned Parenthood officials discussing the buying and selling of organs and tissue from aborted fetuses — some just shy of 20 weeks — to medical research companies.
Fiorina’s description of what takes place in the videos has come under withering attack. Sarah Kliff of Vox labels Fiorina’s version of the scene as “pure fiction.” PolitiFact says it is “mostly false.”
And they have a point. The exact scene, exactly as Fiorina describes it, is not on the videos. But anybody who has watched the videos would find Fiorina’s off-the-cuff account pretty accurate.
Most of the center’s videos involve hidden-camera conversations with current Planned Parenthood managers, as well as interviews with veterans of the abortion industry, discussing the selling of fetal body parts for research purposes. The video Fiorina probably had in mind included eyewitness descriptions accompanied by borrowed footage of a fetus dying in a metal bowl, its leg kicking, to illustrate the witness’s recollection of seeing precisely that in another case. That sort of juxtaposition might not fly on the nightly news, but it’s the sort of dramatic device used in documentaries all the time. It’s akin to a documentary maker interviewing a witness to Cecil the Lion getting shot, and using footage of another lion getting shot as an illustration. Fiorina’s critics want to claim that because she didn’t take into account these distinctions, she’s just making stuff up.