Noah Rothman on the Media’s Favorite Framing Device: ‘Republican Reaction’ StoriesPosted: July 15, 2015 | |
When Republicans pounce, you can be sure that the press will cover the leap and not their target
Noah Rothmans writes: When political reporters are compelled by necessity to report on subjects that cast liberals in a negative light, nothing is more welcome than a reaction quote from a Republican. If a Democrat or a progressive interest group finds itself in the dock, the press can always count on Republicans to rescue liberals from due opprobrium by virtue of their very existence. The story is never the story; for political reporters and editors alike, the Republican reaction to the story is the preferred prism through which to view events Democrats find… discomforting.
” The story is never the story; for political reporters and editors alike, the Republican reaction to the story is the preferred prism through which to view events Democrats find… discomforting.”
On Tuesday, the federally-subsidized abortion provider Planned Parenthood had its worst news cycle since the Supreme Court’s decision in Burwell vs. Hobby Lobby. In a candid video filmed over a two-and-one-half hour lunch, Planned Parenthood’s senior director for medical services, Dr. Deborah Nucatola, dished about the marketplace for discarded fetal organs and body parts in between delicate bites.
“Nucatola’s blasé butcher’s banter makes it clear that this is a competitive market and that supply and demand, not Planned Parenthood’s expenses, is what sets prices.”
— Kevin D. Williamson, National Review
“We’ve been very good at getting heart, lung, liver, because we know that, so I’m not gonna crush that part,” Nucatola told her dining partner. “I’m gonna basically crush below, I’m gonna crush above, and I’m gonna see if I can get it all intact.” She went on to describe how to best remove a child from a womb and to remove its brains while preserving its body in order to meet the demand for infant hearts, lungs, muscle tissue, et cetera.
“This is not a new phenomenon. Republicans engaging in displays of human cognition and reacting to exogenous events often frees the press of their responsibility to report on the merits of a particular story that reflects poorly on Democrats or liberal interest groups.”
The bombshell revelation about an organization that received $27.8 million from taxpayers this year alone should have made national headlines if only to clarify the nuanced legalities of Planned Parenthood’s organ transfer practices.
“Political reporters are curiously enthralled by how frequently ‘Republicans pounce’ on stories that could imperil Democratic electoral prospects.”
The 1993 National Institutes of Health Revitalization Act makes it illegal to “knowingly acquire, receive, or otherwise transfer any human fetal tissue for valuable consideration if the transfer affects interstate commerce,” although exceptions are made for reimbursements related to the transportation, implantation, processing, preservation, and storage of human tissue. It is, however, legal to donate the discarded tissue of aborted infants with parental consent.
That does not mean that there is no profit motive involved in the trade of fetal organs. Planned Parenthood is “reimbursed” for its services; Nucatola even referenced specific dollar figures. “Nucatola’s blasé butcher’s banter makes it clear that this is a competitive market and that supply and demand, not Planned Parenthood’s expenses, is what sets prices,” National Review’s Kevin Williamson observed. It’s a marketplace the American public would surely be interested to know more about.
But there was no shocked media coverage and little appreciable outrage….(read more)
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