Have you heard? Planned Parenthood is making a fortune selling baby parts! At least, that’s what Republican politicians are charging. But don’t believe a word of it. It’s a phony charge based on phony videos made by phony employees of a phony company working for a phony organization.

 At the Aug. 3 GOP forum in Manchester, New Hampshire, which I attended, almost every one of the 14 candidates participating was asked if they’d defund Planned Parenthood. And every one of them said, ‘You bet!’

 It was only the next day that Jeb Bush let the cat out of the bag. Asked about defunding Planned Parenthood at a Southern Baptist conference in Nashville, Bush inadvertently revealed what the newly hatched Republican campaign against Planned Parenthood is all about: ‘You could take dollar for dollar — although I’m not sure we need half a billion dollars for women’s health issues.’

Note the phrase: ‘I’m not sure we need half a billion dollars for women’s health issues.’ That’s the kind of verbal slip that speaks volumes.

 The latest attack is based on four videos, which purportedly show Planned Parenthood staffers, over lunch, making a deal to sell baby parts harvested from abortions. The videos were made over a year ago by the Center for Medical Progress. Employees of the Center, using aliases and armed with fake business cards from a fictitious company called BioMax Procurement Services, showed up at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Pasadena, California, seeking assistance in procuring fetal tissue for medical research.

 They secretly videotaped their conversations and then doctored the videos to make it appear that Planned Parenthood representatives were offering fetal tissue for sale, when in fact they were not. They were simply explaining Planned Parenthood’s official policy, as spelled out by law in 1993: When patients agree, fetal tissue from an abortion may be made available to medical labs — for valuable stem cell research — but only for reimbursement fees to cover administrative costs.

 The real question is: Why? Why do Republicans continue their war on women?

 The answer is simple: It’s a matter of priorities. For Republicans, women’s health is not one of them.

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