All-Star Panel: Obama to address Planned Parenthood amid Gosnell trial

'Special Report' All-Star panel weighs in


This is a rush transcript from "Special Report," April 25, 2013. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.


JAY CARNEY, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: As you know, the president had been scheduled to speak at the Planned Parenthood national conference in Washington on Thursday evening. That has been rescheduled for Friday morning in order to allow him to spend more time with those injured and the loved ones of those lost in the deadly explosion in West, Texas.

JIM BOYD, R - FLORIDA STATE HOUSE: If a baby is born on a table as a result of a botched abortion, what would Planned Parenthood want to have happen with that child that's struggling for life?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Chair recognized.

ALISA LAPOLT SNOW, FLORIDA PLANNED PARENTHOOD AFFILIATES: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Well, we believe -- we believe that, you know, any decision that's made should be left up to the family -- to the woman, her family, and the physician.

BOYD: I think that at that point the patient would be the child struggling on a table.


BRET BAIER, ANCHOR: Well, President Obama is speaking to Planned Parenthood on Friday, not Thursday night in the keynote address spot but Friday morning. But he's still speaking to Planned Parenthood. That last clip from the Florida House about Planned Parenthood there. We're back with the panel. All of this comes obviously, in the context of the Gosnell trial in Philadelphia, the defense resting. A.B., how about this in context, big picture, and the White House choice to move forward with this speech?

A.B. STODDARD, ASSOCIATE EDITOR, THE HILL: We've noted that the Gosnell trial didn't receive very much coverage at first. Now it's a big national story and a lot of people are paying attention to it. People are horrified, those who are pro-life and pro-choice, women, men, everybody.

And this is an interesting choice. You know, last week the White House spokesman was asked about this and didn't have a statement ready, which was sort of -- you know, they knew it would be coming and they didn't have something to say. Now speaking to Planned Parenthood is particularly tricky since the head of the Pennsylvania Planned Parenthood chapter just conceded that, yes, women came to Pennsylvania Planned Parenthood clinics complaining about the services provided at Gosnell's clinics and Planned Parenthood did not follow through. They said you could write a letter to the department of health, but they did themselves not seek any inquiry into what was going on at that clinic. And as you know, it wasn't monitored for 17 years. So, it's a particularly awkward thing for the president, I think, to be going there rather than to any generic group.

BAIER: Charles, to your point, A.B., our tweet for the panel from Joseph asks this, "When are abortion clinics going to be tightly regulated, and, yes, inspected more?" Charles?

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: I think when the public demands it. But when you hear the testimony we just heard of that woman from Planned Parenthood saying that you have a child born alive and whether you are going to treat it as a human is up to the woman, the doctor, and the family, that is absurd. That is shocking. And that is, in fact, what happened in the Gosnell clinic where it was decided by the people in that clinic to let the child die or to kill it. And that is infanticide.

And I would just add one point, Obama, when he was in the Illinois -- when he was a member of the statehouse in Illinois, he voted three times against making it a crime to kill or allow to die a child born after an abortion. So this is not something that he is not in some way approving of, and I think it's a damming thing for him and for the whole administration.

BAIER: Steve?

STEVE HAYES, SENIOR WRITER, THE WEEKLY STANDARD: I think Charles' point is key -- the last point is key as it comes to previewing what the president is likely to say. I think if this were any other president, even a president who were pro-choice, you could expect in the context of this national discussion that we're having on abortion him to show some shock and disgust and outrage at what happened in Philadelphia. But because the president had voted the way that he did back when he was in the Illinois legislature, it's a very difficult argument for the president to make that at this point, this is as horrifying as it is I think to pretty much everybody in the country.

BAIER: Panel, thank you. That is it for the panel. But stay tuned for a look at what's coming up tomorrow here in Texas.

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