Abortion Moves Back Into Political Spotlight With Black Minister Protest

The group accuses Planned Parenthood of letting racist donors target African-American babies.

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Race and abortion politics will merge Thursday when a group of African-American pastors, led by the niece of Martin Luther King Jr., march on the Democratic and Republican Party headquarters to demand that candidates refuse donations from Planned Parenthood. The reason: They believe that Planned Parenthood allows racist donors to designate that their money go to fund abortions of blacks. Planned Parenthood has outlined a $10 million campaign to fund candidates who support abortion. But the ministers say they have evidence in videos that African-American babies are being targeted. The group tells Washington Whispers that it is circulating two YouTube videos in which a racist donor wins agreement from Planned Parenthood workers to have his donation designated for blacks. A similar protest took place in front of Planned Parenthood in Washington in April.

In two statements to Whispers, Planned Parenthood pushed back against the charges, claiming that they were the target of "phishing" by those trying to trip up local office workers and also that they abhor racism. Planned Parenthood does not deny the authenticity of the videos but claims they are edited to portray them badly.

On the issue of racism, they said: "Planned Parenthood does not tolerate racism of any kind. For more than 90 years, Planned Parenthood has worked to address racial and economic bias in access to healthcare and ensure that all women receive care. We are committed to providing basic and preventative health services to women, men, and teens, especially in underserved communities."

With regard to the YouTube videos, the group said: "Planned Parenthood has been the target of an undercover sting operation by anti-choice extremists who have secretly tape recorded Planned Parenthood employees appearing to be complicit in racist donations. In a few cases, local fundraising staff struggled with how to respond professionally to a very unprofessional call. We have taken action to ensure that all of our employees understand their responsibility to communicate clearly with donors about the fact that we do not accept donations from people or organizations whose values are opposed to ours."