CNN’s Sciutto Hypes Abortion by Mail to Counter Pro-Life Laws

Jim Sciutto hyped abortion by mail on Friday’s CNN Newsroom as a potential way to counter pro-life laws being passed around the country in states like Texas and Mississippi and the possible overturning of Roe v. Wade.

Sciutto began the segment by reporting, “the FDA has announced that the abortion pill can now be sent by mail ending the requirement that the medication must be picked up in person. This comes as Texas has essentially outlawed abortion and the Supreme Court does seem poised to undo or amend its abortion rights precedent as it weighs another abortion law case out of Mississippi.”

Senior medical correspondent Elizabeth Cohen also touted the pill’s supposed benefits, “[A]ccording to Planned Parenthood, it [mifepristone] works approximately 95% to 99% of the time. So, Jim, this is very effective, this has been used for many years now and it has a great safety profile. Jim?”

Unless, of course, you are the baby, then it is not so safe. Sciutto then asked White House correspondent John Harwood, “[I]s this a direct response to the law in Texas which now yet again has been allowed to stand by the Supreme Court and other courts? Is it a way, in other words, to give women in a state like Texas access to an abortion?”

Harwood declared that context is hard to ignore and since Congress won’t codify Roe, “[W]hat they can do administratively is make it easier for people and take some sort of step to show supporters of abortion rights, which of course include the president of the United States and the Democratic Congress, show that they’re taking some action to vindicate that right.”

Still, Harwood was realistic enough to see that red states will take their own actions to restrict mifepristone, which was something that worried Sciutto. 

Does the administration have a plan? Because some abortion rights group speak of a scenario where half the states outlaw or severely restrict abortion. What is the administration doing to plan for that outcome?” he fretted.

Unfortunately for Sciutto, Harwood replied that their only real option is to try to mobilize public opinion, but also added that “obviously, blue states are going to take their own actions to protect the right to abortion, but limited number of steps that the administration can take. They’ve taken one today.” 

CNN.com’s write up on the story was even worse as it was full of pro-abortion euphemisms like “terminating a pregnancy” and the only pro-life perspectives given was pro-life groups urging their state legislatures to update their laws, not anything on the actual substance of the matter.

This segment was sponsored by Kraft.

Here is a transcript for the December 17 show:

CNN

CNN Newsroom with Poppy Harlow and Jim Sciutto

10:20 AM ET

JIM SCIUTTO: Another major story we’re following this morning, the FDA has announced that the abortion pill can now be sent by mail ending the requirement that the medication must be picked up in person. This comes as Texas as has essentially outlawed abortion and the Supreme Court does seem poised to undo or amend its abortion rights precedent as it weighs another abortion law case out of Mississippi. Joining me now, senior medical correspondent for CNN, Elizabeth Cohen, and also CNN’s John Harwood from the White House. Elizabeth, let’s begin with you. Explain exactly what this medication is, who’s eligible for it, and what a difference this will make. 

ELIZABETH COHEN: Right. So, this is a pill. It’s actually two pills and it’s called mifepristone. Let’s go over some of the basics about it. So, it needs to be taken early in pregnancy, 70 days or less after a woman’s missed period. So, that is really quite early and it must be prescribed by a certified health care provider, so not just any doctor can prescribe this. They have to go through a process to get certified beforehand and according to Planned Parenthood, it works approximately 95% to 99% of the time. So, Jim, this is very effective, this has been used for many years now and it has a great safety profile. Jim? 

SCIUTTO: John Harwood, I wonder, is this a direct response to the law in Texas which now yet again has been allowed to stand by the Supreme Court and other courts? Is it a way, in other words, to give women in a state like Texas access to an abortion? 

JOHN HARWOOD: Well hard to say, Jim, that it’s direct response. This has been percolating since April when the FDA suspended the rule that said you had, it had to include an in-person visit by the patient. But I think you can’t ignore the context here. You have a Supreme Court that seems poised to either sharply restrict or eliminate the right to abortion codified in Roe v. Wade at some point within the next coming months. 

And as you mentioned, the Texas law has effectively outlawed abortion there. And so you have an executive branch that has limited options to respond. They can’t legislatively protect the right to abortion because they don’t have the votes in Congress. But, what they can do administratively is make it easier for people and take some sort of step to show supporters of abortion rights, which of course include the president of the United States and the Democratic Congress, show that they’re taking some action to vindicate that right. Of course if the Roe v. Wade is eliminated, states will be able to interfere with what the FDA is doing and block it within their states. But it’s something that the administration can do…

SCIUTTO: Yeah

HARWOOD: … now at a time when the tide is moving against them on this issue and moving against supporters across the country of abortion rights. 

SCIUTTO: Yeah John, I mean, on that point, you have a Court here and again, the Court could surprise, but there are many folks who follow this Court closely who see Roe v. Wade perhaps being overturned or a step short of that restricted in some way. Does the administration have a plan? Because some abortion rights group speak of a scenario where half the states outlaw or severely restrict abortion. What is the administration doing to plan for that outcome? 

HARWOOD: Well, I think the principal plan the administration can have is to try to mobilize voters in reaction to a potential decision by the Supreme Court. The presidential administration cannot counter a Supreme Court ruling that eliminates that right. One of the questions, though, will be what will be the political ramifications for the Republican Party and the fight between the two parties nationally? So, that’s a large part of it. Obviously, blue states are going to take their own actions to protect the right to abortion, but limited number of steps that the administration can take. They’ve taken one today. 

View Original Source Source