TO: Interested Parties
FROM: Eric Ferrero, VP for Communications, Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA)
DATE: October 7, 2015
RE: David Daleiden’s Campaign of Deception Against Planned Parenthood
Yesterday came the revelation that extreme anti-abortion activist David Daleiden and a friend spent eleven months editing the videos meant to attack Planned Parenthood. As we see Daleiden hemming and hawing over releasing his full unedited source footage and other evidence in his deceptive operation meant to roll back women’s access to health care --- even after a court ruled he should legally comply with requests from Congress. Daleiden’s attacks have failed to move public opinion about Planned Parenthood, or public support for women’s access to safe and legal abortion, and he faces a host of legal troubles as a result of his actions. It’s time for Daleiden to drop his charade and come clean about his campaign of deception against Planned Parenthood.
Quote from Eric Ferrero, Vice President for Communications, PPFA:
“Given how heavily edited these videos are, it shouldn't be a surprise that it took them nearly a year to get all of the editing done. There's no other way to describe this than a long-con fraud by extremists who are obsessed with banning abortion in this country. If these were serious people who thought they really witnessed wrongdoing, they would have immediately alerted authorities and turned over everything --- instead, they spent a year editing it and sharing it with right-wing politicians before releasing doctored videos that still don't show any wrongdoing.”
Daleiden has played deceptive games with these videos all along, but the fact remains that unless he hands over the full source footage, there will still be no way to authenticate them. This is spelled out in a letter written to the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, advised by former FBI forensic video/audio analyst Douglas Lacey. Since then, Democrats on the committee have demanded to see full source footage and for Daleiden to testify.
A California court has ordered Daleiden to turn over full, unedited source footage to both the court and congressional committees. This comes after revelations that Daleiden created counterfeit federal identification, and months of demands for Daleiden to release all unedited, source footage and original recordings.
For obvious reasons, it’s hard to believe anything Daleiden says, especially as it relates to authentic, source footage. Nothing about Daleiden and his operation has been honest.
After coming under fire for editing the videos, Daleiden and CMP hired a fake forensic practice to analyze their videos for authenticity.
And after all of these lies and deceptive editing of the videos, there is still no evidence of wrongdoing by Planned Parenthood. Even the congressman overseeing one of the investigations into Planned Parenthood – who, like all of the politicians running these investigations, opposes access to safe and legal abortion and wants to restrict women’s access to all reproductive health care – has said there is no reason to believe Planned Parenthood engaged in wrongdoing.
BACKGROUND: Daleiden’s Tap Dance Around the Truth
FACT: Despite Numerous Requests, Anti-Abortion Activists Have Not Yet Released Unedited Source Footage of Their Deceptively Edited Videos Attacking Planned Parenthood
·Planned Parenthood Federation of America: Planned Parenthood Calls on Anti-Abortion Activists to Release All Video Footage to Authorities Immediately
·Representative Diana DeGette: DeGette Calls for Anti-Choice Activists to Release Full, Unedited Tapes
·Media Matters: Media Matters Calls On Center For Medical Progress To Release Full, Unedited Source Footage Of Anti-Planned Parenthood Smear Videos
FACT: An independent forensic examination of the videos released by CMP found that they do not present a complete or accurate record of the events they purport to depict.
· “Their review did conclude that CMP edited content out of the alleged “full footage” videos, and heavily edited the short videos so as to misrepresent statements made by Planned Parenthood representative.”
· Videos contain “edited conversations where some spoken words are eliminated and some spoken words are added out of context.”
· “Mr. Fredericks identifies loss of significant time and image continuity attributable to postproduction edits.”
· “All four videos also contained intentional edits that removed content from the middle of the videos.”
FACT: Forensic experts have found that “full footage” videos and transcripts released by CMP are also heavily edited.
Forensic experts have found that “full footage” videos and transcripts released by CMP are also heavily edited:
· “Professional analysis revealed that the full footage videos contained numerous intentional post-production edits.”
· Experts identify numerous “cuts, skips, missing tape, and changes in camera angle” throughout the “full footage” videos.
· “Analysis reveals that approximately 30 minutes of the meeting are missing from the video shortly after the eighth minute of recording. The clock superimposed on the video skips from 07:46:47 to 08:15:15 from one frame to the next.”
· “The manipulation of the videos does mean they have no evidentiary value in a legal context and cannot be relied upon for any official inquiries…”
New York Times: Undercover Planned Parenthood Videos Were Altered, Analysis Finds“... ‘the manipulation of the videos does mean they have no evidentiary value in a legal context and cannot be relied upon for any official inquiries unless C.M.P. provides investigators with its original material, and that material is independently authenticated as unaltered.”
NY Daily News: Undercover Planned Parenthood videos were altered by abortion opponents: analysis “Statements were spliced together at least 42 times to appear like seamless conversations, the analysis found. Two of the videos were each missing 30-minute chunks of footage… CMP's "undisclosed edits and cuts distort the meaning of the encounters the videos purport to document," the analysis said.”
MSNBC: Planned Parenthood: Even ‘full’ videos were altered “The research firm also found that the transcripts provided by the Center for Medical Progress are inaccurate as judged against a transcript made by an independent service. ‘All four transcripts by CMP contain substantive omissions, and the Texas transcript appears to be grossly edited,’ the Fusion GPS report says.”
Reuters: Planned Parenthood report says fetal tissue videos were distorted "Any time someone has made undisclosed changes to an audio or video file, that renders the file unreliable," lead investigator and former Wall Street Journal investigative reporter Glenn Simpson said during a media conference call.”
Vox: I thought I saw all the Planned Parenthood sting footage. Turns out the tapes were edited. “The inaccurate transcript and the jumping timestamps make a pretty compelling case that I didn't get the full picture. CMP can't just wave away the missing footage as boring bathroom breaks; it's impossible to know what might be missing without complete video. If the group wants to present these as the full videos behind the sting operation, then it needs to actually provide the complete footage — however dull or boring those other parts might be.”
FACT: Representative Franks Admitted the House Judiciary Committee Had Neither Seen Nor Asked for Full, Unedited Source Footage From the Center for Medical Progress
·USA Today: “Rep. David Cicilline, D-R.I., also got Franks to concede that the committee's GOP majority has not seen the full unedited videos and had not asked CMP to provide them.”
·Yahoo: “A committee member admitted that the Committee has neither seen nor asked for the unedited CMP videos. Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) asked Rep. Franks repeatedly if the committee is in the possession of the unedited version of the CMP tapes...When Cicilline pointed out that those tapes have been confirmed to be edited — including the versions marked by the organization as unedited — and asked again if the committee had the original source footage from the CMP, Franks replied, ‘The answer is, no, we do not…’”
·The Nation: “Later, Franks was pressed on whether he’d actually seen full, unedited footage from CMP. After erroneously claiming that CMP had made it available online, Franks admitted that neither he nor anyone else from the GOP majority had seen the footage in its complete form. He also confirmed that committee Republicans haven’t asked for it.”
FACT: Videos Released By Anti-Abortion Activists Calling Themselves the Center for Medical Progress Have Been Widely Discredited
As a result of these and other deceptions, the videos have been widely discredited and are increasingly being denounced as unreliable.
·San Jose Mercury News: “The videos are grossly misleading and politically irresponsible.”
·Los Angeles Times: “Leaving aside the potential violation of California law, which forbids recording a person without consent, the narrative pushed by the anti-abortion activists is a total crock.”
·Houston Chronicle: “The footage initially was released in an edited form that made it look like Nucatola was talking about selling fetal organs, which is illegal. The full video indicates that the subject likely was legal organ donation, and the discussed costs were to perform the preservation."
·The Seattle Times: “The videos make it appear that compassionate doctors are violating the law. In actuality, providers in these videos spoke at length following strict ethical guidelines and about not making a profit from any donations. In fact, it appears the only lawbreakers are the group who orchestrated elaborate lies in an attempt to discredit doctors who care about the health and well-being of women.”
· Washington Post: “That truths were distorted to paint an inaccurate and unfair picture of a health organization that provides valuable services to women — as well as to demonize research that leads to important medical advances — doesn’t matter to antiabortion activists. Or, sadly, to the politicians who pander to them.”
·New York Times: “The Center for Medical Progress video campaign is a dishonest attempt to make legal, voluntary and potentially lifesaving tissue donations appear nefarious and illegal. Lawmakers responding by promoting their own anti-choice agenda are rewarding deception and putting women’s health and their constitutionally protected rights at risk.”
·Central Maine: “Nobody is seen “selling“ tissue. Nobody is seen “profiting“ from abortion. Nobody is seen breaking the law or even behaving unethically, except maybe for the off-screen “actors“ who are trying to coax their target into crossing a line.”
·NJ Star-Ledger: “So the real scandal here is a Republican effort to use this heavily-edited video as an excuse to pull funding for women's health care, out of opposition to abortion.”
·Chicago Sun-Times: “As a medical ethicist and lawyer, the headlines concerned me. But after scrutinizing hours of video, it appears Planned Parenthood doctors are complying with federal law allowing ‘reasonable payments’ for collection of fetal tissue. As the organization’s senior director of medical services explains in the unedited version of her videotaped meeting with people posing as members of the research community, abortion clinics ‘want to offer this service because patients ask about it. … just as much as the patients, the providers absolutely want to help [medical research].’”
·Michigan Public Radio: “Planned Parenthood has been saving women and families from poverty and desperation for 99 years. Now, its enemies are ‘swift boating’ it; presenting lies and distortions as fact.”
·Austin Chronicle: “...much context has been left out of the anti-choice response. For one, consider the source: Texas conservatives and other GOPers are eating up dubious claims from the Center For Medical Progress – an ardently anti-choice group associated with Live Action, known to release heavily edited videos that have historically targeted Planned Parenthood. And one of CMP’s founders (Troy Newman) heads Operation Rescue, a group that advocated harassing abortion clinic workers and ran a decades-long campaign against murdered abortion doctor Dr. George Tiller.”
Planned Parenthood is the nation's leading provider and advocate of high-quality, affordable health care for women, men, and young people, as well as the nation's largest provider of sex education. With approximately 700 health centers across the country, Planned Parenthood organizations serve all patients with care and compassion, with respect and without judgment. Through health centers, programs in schools and communities, and online resources, Planned Parenthood is a trusted source of reliable health information that allows people to make informed health decisions. We do all this because we care passionately about helping people lead healthier lives.
October 07, 2015