Handel Behind Komen Planned Parenthood Decision

Handel Behind Komen Planned Parenthood Decision February 7, 2012

In the firestorm of controversy following the decision by the Susan G. Komen Foundation’s decision to stop funding Planned Parenthood, Komen’s founder repeatedly claimed that the decision had nothing to do with the hiring of Karen Handel, who is stridently anti-abortion and was a Republican politician in Georgia. But it appears that was a lie. HuffPo has the details:

But a Komen insider told HuffPost on Sunday that Karen Handel, Komen’s staunchly anti-abortion vice president for public policy, was the main force behind the decision to defund Planned Parenthood and the attempt to make that decision look nonpolitical.

“Karen Handel was the prime instigator of this effort, and she herself personally came up with investigation criteria,” the source, who requested anonymity for professional reasons, told HuffPost. “She said, ‘If we just say it’s about investigations, we can defund Planned Parenthood and no one can blame us for being political.'”

Emails between Komen leadership on the day the Planned Parenthood decision was announced, which were reviewed by HuffPost under the condition they not be published, confirm the source’s description of Handel’s sole “authority” in crafting and implementing the Planned Parenthood policy.

Things just get worse and worse for Komen. Though they reversed their terrible decision, it’s unlikely that they will ever fully recover from this self-inflicted wound.

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  • slc1
  • Randomfactor

    And turned down a severance package, so she may have some shots to fire at her former employer.

    Which would be fine by me. The wingnuts are already mad at SGKF for their non-cave cave. So am I.

  • raven

    I don’t care about or for SG Komen anymore.

    They really hit me close to the heart (literally) on a lot of different levels.

    So I did what any godless Pagan would do. Called up the website of Planned Parenthood and sent them some money.

  • daved

    I saw on cnn.com this morning that Planned Parenthood has received at least $3 million in donations in the wake of this whole SGK fiasco.

  • My understanding is that none of the money that Komen gave to Planned Parenthood went for abortions, nor does one cent of federal funds go for abortions there. Not one cent.

    I believe, as many women have told me, that the driving force behind defunding Planned Parenthood is the medical-insurance industry, because PP offers free medical services, including screening for breast cancer, to low income women who would have no access to any health care otherwise.

    That Handel would throw those women under the bus for the sake of her wingnut ideology is outrageous.

  • kraut

    “That Handel would throw those women under the bus for the sake of her wingnut ideology is outrageous.”

    No. it is part and parcel of their policy.

    Sacrifice others to advance your ideology. Sounds somewhat familiar…where did I hear that before..

  • Zinc Avenger

    Susan G Komen has managed the impossible: The left decries their withdrawal, the right despises their caving. Well done. That’s exactly how such a huge and powerful organization that relies on public goodwill can have the rug pulled out from underneath.

  • Tualha

    Now all we need is for Anonymous to hack them, get those emails, and publish them. Stick a fork in them, they’re done.

  • d cwilson

    My understanding is that none of the money that Komen gave to Planned Parenthood went for abortions, nor does one cent of federal funds go for abortions there. Not one cent.

    The wingnut argument is “money is fungible”. Meaning that every penny spent on cancer screening frees a penny from another source that can be spent on abortion, even though the dirty abortion money is kept in a separate account from the clean cancer-screening money.

    Of course, they scoffed at this argument when it was made in regards to funding religious organizations.

  • My understanding is that none of the money that Komen gave to Planned Parenthood went for abortions, nor does one cent of federal funds go for abortions there. Not one cent.

    Further to D Cwilson’s comments @9 above, just that fact that PP provides abortions is enough to taint them in the eyes of the wingnuts, even if not a penny of Komen money funded abortions. For decades now, it has been the strategy of the Right Wing to defund what they consider to be institutions of the Left, which they consider to be NPR, Public Broadcasting, the National Endowment for the Arts, and Planned Parenthood, among others. I used to be a conservative and read many conservative publications in the early 90s and they talked about it a lot back then.

    What Handel and others tried to do via Komen is part of their war plan.

    So I did what any godless Pagan would do. Called up the website of Planned Parenthood and sent them some money.

    Raven @3, I just called PP and doubled my monthly giving total.

  • John Hinkle

    reverendrodney says:

    I believe, as many women have told me, that the driving force behind defunding Planned Parenthood is the medical-insurance industry…

    Hmm. A few months ago on Janet Parshall’s show on Moody Bible Radio, she had on a “former employee” of PP who had “whistle blower” “insider info” about PP and “abortion profits.” (Aw hell, I might as well put the all of the rest in scare quotes).

    [scare quotes, and I am not making this up]

    This person claimed all PP abortions were paid in cash, and the doctors were paid in cash – clandestinely by getting an envelope handed to them outside the back door of the PP clinic – so that there was no paper trail. PP had a policy of talking young women into having abortions, and disallowed them from viewing sonograms or other images of their pregnancy, or from getting info about non-abortion options. PP’s goal was to encourage all young women between 14 and 21 to have 3 to 5 abortions so that PP could maximize their abortion profits.

    [/scare quotes]

    I might’ve made up that part about the back door, but the rest is pretty close and so over the top that you’d think Satan himself was the CEO of PP. Oh, and the whistle blower had a book or DVD to sell. Imagine that.

    In any case, it sounds like the medical-insurance industry wants a piece of that “action.” I wonder how the conservatards would react to that?

  • D. C. Sessions

    I see she’s taken the bullet for the team, but a bit too much came out to convince me that the rest of the upper management wasn’t 100% with the program.

  • AsqJames

    Crikey! A self-avowed Christian creating a smokescreen to obscure their true motivation. If I didn’t know how religion made people so moral I’d call it bearing false witness.

  • Doc Bill

    Two things.

    First, I don’t understand how the policy to defund organizations got approved by the board. Handel couldn’t do it on her own. So, really, Handel is only part of the problem. The rest is with the board that went along with the policy as a smokescreen to defund organizations they didn’t like for whatever reason. Brinker lied about the policy and its intent and tried to cover up the whole thing. I think Komen is mortally wounded, now.

    Second, there was a report last week that Komen had quietly pulled funding from labs doing embryonic stem cell research, another religious hot button. Any follow-up on that or is my imagination running wild.

    If true, along with the PP debacle, it would appear that Komen has simply become a tool of Republican politics. Too bad.

  • D. C. Sessions

    Late report: Handel told all.

    It seems that the whole plan was well along before she even arrived. In other words, if she goes down she’s taking them with her.

  • I was never a huge fan of the Susan Komen Foundation, but I do think they did some good. If they allowed the republifucktards to take over their board then they deserve to reap the whirlwind. Fuck’em.