12:13p: Ezra Klein at the Washington Post:
But what does this mea culpa mean? Brinker goes on to make clear that they will amend their guidelines so only “criminal and conclusive” investigations affect their funding decisions. They will ensure that “politics has no place in our grant process,” and they will “continue to fund existing grants, including those of Planned Parenthood, and preserve their eligibility to apply for future grants, while maintaining the ability of our affiliates to make funding decisions that meet the needs of their communities.”
So they are, perhaps, backing down. Or perhaps not. Yesterday, the Komen Foundation said the investigation was not the cause of their reduced support for Planned Parenthood, and that the real issue was that Planned Parenthood did not directly provide mammograms. This statement doesn’t address that concern at all. So it would appear to leave open the possibility that the foundation intends to reject Planned Parenthood’s future grant applications — albeit on less overtly political grounds.
I posed these questions to Leslie Aun, vice president for communications at the Komen Foundation. “I think our statement speaks for itself,” she replied.
12:05p: This is all breaking news, so bear with me. I’ll tell you what I know. News organizations like the Associated Press are reporting:
After three days of controversy, the Susan G. Komen for the Cure breast-cancer charity says it is reversing its decision to cut breast-screening grants to Planned Parenthood.
Read Komen’s full statement here. Key excerpts:
Our original desire was to fulfill our fiduciary duty to our donors by not funding grant applications made by organizations under investigation. We will amend the criteria to make clear that disqualifying investigations must be criminal and conclusive in nature and not political. That is what is right and fair.
Our only goal for our granting process is to support women and families in the fight against breast cancer. Amending our criteria will ensure that politics has no place in our grant process. We will continue to fund existing grants, including those of Planned Parenthood, and preserve their eligibility to apply for future grants, while maintaining the ability of our affiliates to make funding decisions that meet the needs of their communities.
It is our hope and we believe it is time for everyone involved to pause, slow down and reflect on how grants can most effectively and directly be administered without controversies that hurt the cause of women.
This statement represents nothing new. Komen and CEO Nancy Brinker had already stated they would continue to fund Planned Parenthood’s existing grants through 2012 (one through 2013). Brinker told Andrew Mitchell that number was three. Other reports and my source say the number is five.
If Planned Parenthood is found guilty of criminal investigations, several of which are ongoing around the states (Medicaid fraud in Texas and California; fraudulent reporting and illegal abortions in Kansas, and yes, the federal Congressional investigation, etc.), Komen’s criteria will still disqualify Planned Parenthood from receiving grants, as it should.
This is Komen’s attempt to get the abortion mafia off their backs. Planned Parenthood and its thugs have engaged in typical shakedown: Give us money or we will destroy you.
Be savvy. Nothing has changed. Komen is merely trying to to get some breathing room.