Trump and Republicans are spreading disinformation about abortion before the election

Former President Donald Trump told thousands of people in Wildwood the baseless claim that Democrats wanted to pass an abortion bill that would allow doctors to “execute” newborns.

“If the radical extremists of the Democrats have their way,” Trump said during his speech Rally last Saturday, “they will have federal law regarding abortion in the eighth and ninth months, and even the execution of a child after birth.”

Trump mentioned the execution of infants in the US earlier speeches that were rejected by the Poynter Institute, a nonprofit media research organization, which said, “Democrats do not call for killing infants after birth.”

That Trump’s claim was untrue seemed to mean little to viewers, who cheered as Trump repeated it, an example of how misinformation about abortion has taken root among much of Trump.

The lies are expected to multiply in the run-up to a high-stakes presidential election in which abortion will be a key dividing line between the candidates.

” READ MORE: There is only one key issue on which Pa. voters. they trust Joe Biden over Donald Trump: abortion

“What some people say about abortion is becoming contrary to facts and knowledge,” said sociologist Judith Levine, director of Temple University Public Policy Lab. “They create a confirmation bias – the comfort that comes from having your fears and anger validated and enjoying companionship in the face of outrage.”

Levine said repeating inaccurate information about the procedure creates an “echo chamber of inflammatory ideas,” as Trump’s speech demonstrated.

” READ MORE: The Wildwood rally shows that Trump’s base has become louder and prouder since 2016

Levine emphasized that there is a difference between those who simply believe abortion is wrong and those who perpetuate lies on an already fraught topic.

How does abortion misinformation spread on the campaign trail?

Trump’s influence on abortion was on display last month at the conservative Pennsylvania Leadership Conference in Camp Hill, which was attended by Republicans who will be on the ballot alongside the former president in Pennsylvania, including Senate candidate Dave McCormick and U.S. Rep. Scott Perry.

Known as the most vital gathering of conservative politicians, advocates and thinkers in the Commonwealth, the conference has been spreading Republican thought during election seasons for 35 years.

Melanie Kornides, a nursing professor at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing who specializes in combating medical misinformation, said the conference “was intended to manipulate using incomplete or false facts.”

Trump’s claims about abortion were accompanied by conference speaker Cheryl Allen, a former Pennsylvania Supreme Court justice and current national counsel. Pennsylvania Family Institutea conservative organization that aims to make the state “a place where God is worshiped, religious freedom flourishes, families thrive and life is valued.”

She said abortion rights supporters “promote abortion up to the due date.” Allen also declared, “Abortion is dangerous” and asserted that abortion drugs “endanger women’s lives.”

The panel discussion, which Allen anchored, ended with an attack on abortion-inducing drugs mifepristone, half of the drug combination that can be used to end a pregnancy will “starve the baby to death.” Doctors have said these claims – circulating on the right – have no basis in reality.

Sarah Gutman, an obstetrician-gynecologist in Philadelphia who specializes in abortion, said it is inappropriate to characterize the abortion procedure, as well as the drugs used during medication abortion, as unsafe.

“A pregnancy is seven times more likely to result in death than an abortion,” she said. There are other estimates twice the rate.

Sarah Pragerprofessor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Washington in Seattle, concluded that abortion is safer than colonoscopy, tonsillectomy and plastic surgery.

Medical abortion is FDA-approved and considered protected, and earnest complications requiring hospitalization (vaginal bleeding, pelvic pain or infection) occur in less than 0.3% of patients, according to American Association of Medical Colleges.

Referring to the “hunger of a ‘child'” as opposed to a fetus, Gutman said, “is completely inflammatory and inaccurate. And there is no point in pregnancy if the fetus receives food. It causes blood to flow from the placenta.

She also said that allowing doctors to perform abortions in the ninth month of pregnancy is “simply not an option,” especially at a time when abortion can be considered a crime in some places.

Experts say misinformation from conferences like this spreads to the public via social media.

“Something from a conference like this is being reported as fact when it is just a way to sow fear and discord,” Gutman said. “It’s intentional and malicious.”

Do other GOP candidates sound like Trump when they talk about abortion?

While neither Perry nor McCormick addressed abortion at Camp Hill, they spread misinformation in other campaign appearances.

Perry said in April that the left “demands no restrictions on how and when unborn children can be aborted.” And in February, o McCormick’s spokesman mischaracterized his opponent, Sen. Bob Casey, by saying that the incumbent Pennsylvania Democrat “has voted repeatedly to allow abortion up to the point of delivery.”

Then on May 2, McCormick amplified misinformation about abortion radio episode on the Dawn Stensland Show from Philadelphia on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT. He agreed with Stensland, a longtime Philadelphia broadcaster and media activist, that abortion is a money laundering operation for Democrats.

Stensland said: “I always say that the abortion issue is not really about reproductive rights. It’s not, really, for me personally. Look at the money and this is a money laundering operation. Look at the money that is going from the Democratic administration to Planned Parenthood.”

McCormick then said:

“Yes, and you know, the position of Bob Casey and others is about federal funds [for Planned Parenthood], which I am against. I agree with you.

The 1977 Hyde Amendment banned the use of federal funds for abortion.

Planned Parenthood does not receive federal funding for its abortion services, but its affiliates receive Medicaid reimbursement for other medical services. They also receive federal grants through the Department of Health and Human Services’ Title X program, which supports birth control, breast cancer screening and other reproductive health care.

Tara Murtha, director of strategic communications at the Women’s Law Project, a Philadelphia-based organization that, among other things, advocates for abortion rights, was asked about McCormick’s radio appearances and called the money laundering characterization “too absurd to be taken seriously.” occupy.”

Staff writer Aliya Schneider contributed to this article.

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