Kirsters Baish| On Wednesday, failed presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton backed up a claim that was made by Democratic Senator Kamala Harris involving President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s personal views on birth control. The problem? The claim was proven to be false by numerous fact-checkers prior to Clinton putting in her two cents.
Clinton tweeted, “I want to be sure we’re all clear about something that Brett Kavanaugh said in his confirmation hearings last week. He referred to birth-control pills as ‘abortion-inducing drugs.’ That set off a lot of alarm bells for me, and it should for you, too.”
“Kavanaugh didn’t use that term because he misunderstands the basic science of birth control—the fact that birth control prevents fertilization of eggs in the first place. He used that term because it’s a dog whistle to the extreme right,” she continued.
Kavanaugh didn't use that term because he misunderstands the basic science of birth control—the fact that birth control prevents fertilization of eggs in the first place. He used that term because it's a dog whistle to the extreme right.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) September 12, 2018
The Washington Post presented Senator Harris with four Pinocchios after she shared a highly edited video on Kavanaugh while attempting to make the argument that he is “going after” women’s birth control.
The California Democrat sent out a tweet containing video footage of an exchange between Brett Kavanaugh and Republican Senator Ted Cruz during the last week’s confirmation hearings in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Kavanaugh answered Cruz by recalling that in the case, the plaintiff priests’ position on completing a Department of Health and Human Services form in order to get a waiver from the contraception mandate. If the mandate is accepted by HHS, health insurance providers will be required to grant free birth control to any customers who have an interest.
Kavanaugh said to Cruz, “They said filling out the form would make them complicit in the provision of the abortion-inducing drugs that they were, as a religious matter, objecting to.”
The video posted by Harris left out the part where Kavanaugh said, “they said,” which made it seem as though he was making a comment about his own view on the issue, and possibly birth control as a whole.
Harris wrote about the exchange on Twitter this past Friday.
“Kavanaugh chooses his words very carefully, and this is a dog whistle for going after birth control,” she wrote. “He was nominated for the purpose of taking away a woman’s constitutionally protected right to make her own health care decisions. Make no mistake – this is about punishing women.”
Kavanaugh chooses his words very carefully, and this is a dog whistle for going after birth control. He was nominated for the purpose of taking away a woman’s constitutionally protected right to make her own health care decisions. Make no mistake – this is about punishing women. pic.twitter.com/zkBjXzIvQI
— Kamala Harris (@SenKamalaHarris) September 7, 2018
Western Journal writes:
Kavanaugh explained to Cruz that the reason he dissented in the case was based on the Supreme Court’s Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores decision, which found business owners have the right not to provide contraception coverage to employees if it runs contrary to their sincerely held religious beliefs.
It should be noted that Hobby Lobby’s owners did not object to providing birth control coverage, which they were in fact doing, but did object to providing contraceptives they believe cause abortions, including “morning-after pills” and two types of intrauterine devices.
There are 16 other FDA-approved contraception methods that the company did not object to, as they prevent the egg from being fertilized in the first place.
However, the four methods of contraception at issue in the case “may have the effect of preventing an already fertilized egg from developing any further by inhibiting its attachment to the uterus.” Thus, the concern was that by providing these abortifacients, they would be facilitating abortion.
After receiving significant criticism for her misleading tweet, Harris included Kavanaugh’s comments in context in a subsequent post, but argued, “There’s no question that he uncritically used the term ‘abortion-inducing drugs,’ which is a dog whistle term used by extreme anti-choice groups to describe birth control.”
The Washington Post didn’t like that answer.
“Harris’s decision to snip those crucial words (‘they said’) from her first post on the video is certainly troubling,” the Washington Post’s fact-checker, Glenn Kessler, wrote.
He wrote of her follow-up tweet, “But there was no acknowledgment by Harris that the original tweet was misleading.”
Kessler finished off by saying, “She earns Four Pinocchios — and her fellow Democrats should drop this talking point.”
In case you were wondering, four Pinocchios is the very worst rating that the Washington Post has ever given.
Politifact also noted that Harris was incorrect in her statements.
“In Harris’ tweet, Kavanaugh appears to define contraception as abortion-inducing. But the video failed to include a crucial qualifier: ‘They said,’” Politifact reported. “In fact, he was citing the definition of the religious group Priests for Life. He has not expressed his personal view. We rate this statement False.”
National Review’s David French slammed Clinton for supporting Harris’ claim, as she should have checked the facts.
Hillary Clinton comes barreling back into the conversation with a timely reminder that she’s one of the more prolific liars in modern American politics. https://t.co/K9wIPL8qsh
— David French (@DavidAFrench) September 12, 2018
He wrote, “Hillary Clinton comes barreling back into the conversation with a timely reminder that she’s one of the more prolific liars in modern American politics.”
A tiger never changes it’s stripes.