MSNBC Brings On Former Pa. Gov. Rendell To Discuss Abortion, Doesn’t Ask About Philly Abortionist Gosnell

One of the most blatant and disgusting blackouts of the Kermit Gosnell murder trial occurred on MSNBC on April 11.  Appearing on Jansing & Co. on Friday morning, former Governor Ed Rendell (D-Pa.) appeared with Republican strategist Chip Saltsman to discuss changing trends in support for abortion, yet host Chris Jansing did not ask the former governor (and former Philadelphia mayor) about the murder trial for the notorious abortionist in his state. 

Gosnell is currently on trial, charged with murdering seven babies and a female patient at his abortion clinic in Philadelphia.  If convicted, he could face the death penalty.  Despite the horrific nature of the crimes Gosnell is accused of committing, including forcing women to endure labor and then deliver live babies that were killed by staff with scissors, the liberal media all but ignored the story altogether, although that may be changing with CNN's Anderson Cooper pledging to delve into the trial tonight.

It appears as though MSNBC, which promotes abortion rights on a regular basis, has no interest either in covering this story either.  As we at NewsBusters have documented, the big three news networks have punted on covering Gosnell’s murder trial. 

On MSNBC Friday, Governor Ed Rendell, who served as Pennsylvania’s governor from 2003-2011 (and Philadelphia mayor from 1992-2000) was not asked a single question by host Chris Jansing about the trial in his state.  Instead, Jansing brought Rendell on to slam the GOP for its pro-life stance:

Their ridiculous abortion things regardless of what that poll shows people don't want personhood amendments yet Republicans seem willing to pass personhood amendments to drive Planned Parenthood clinics, to do so much more than abortion out of business. It's crazy.

The segment focused on a new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll showing that, “50 percent of Americans now say abortion should be illegal either with exceptions or without them.”  One would think that a segment featuring abortion in which the governor of the state where Kermit Gosnell operated his late-term abortion clinic would be the perfect opportunity for MSNBC to discuss the story.  The NBC News broadcast network has failed to cite the poll finding on abortion, even while using the same survey to tout findings on gun control.  

Unfortunately, MSNBC has decided to follow NBC News’ lead in ignoring this story, and failed to challenge Rendell on the issue. But then again, this is the network that's giving NARAL Pro-Choice America board member Karen Finney a weekend TV show.

Sadly, this is not the first time Governor Rendell has been given a pass on the Gosnell story.  As NewsBusters reported in 2011, the Associated Press relieved Rendell of any responsibility for the disgusting conditions that existed at Gosnell’s clinic.  Rendell was unaware that the Pennsylvania’s Department of Health’s authority didn’t extent to abortion clinics, which allowed for Gosnell’s clinic to go unregulated or inspected since 1993. 

Such a pass by the liberal media demonstrates that their pro-abortion agenda has no limits, even when a “doctor” could face the death penalty for murdering seven babies and one adult patient. 


See relevant transcript below.


Jansing and Co.

April 12, 2013

10:30 a.m. EDT

CHRIS JANSING: As the left gains traction on issues like same sex marriage and legalizing marijuana the right is gaining ground on abortion in several states. Abortion rights advocates are in Virginia are making one last attempt today to derail strict new regulations they say would force most of the state's abortion clinics to shut down. The virginia board of health scheduled to vote on whether to require abortion clinics to meet hospital standards on a permanent basis. If approved Virginia would join four other states that have adopted some of the toughest restrictions on abortion in the nation in just the past six weeks. Here's GOP Congressman Paul Ryan last night.

PAUL RYAN: We need to articulate a vision. One that can attract a very broad coalition. To advance our pro life cause we need to work with people who consider themselves pro choice because our task is not to purge our ranks it's to grow them. We don't want a country where abortion is simply outlawed. We want a country where it isn't even considered.

JANSING: Let me bring in former Pennsylvania governor and NBC News political analyst Ed Rendell and Republican strategist Chip Saltsman. Good morning guys. So there's a new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll that’s very interesting because 50% of Americans now say abortion should be illegal either with exceptions or without them. That's an eight-point shift Governor since January. Why is the right gaining ground on this issue?

ED RENDELL: Well, it's hard to figure out these polls, Chris. They vary from month to month. But I will say the Republican Party lately has been doing everything it can to commit mass suicide. On the one hand they talk about repackaging and rebranding and you heard Paul Ryan talking about stuff like that in the report that the chairman put out. On the other hand, they are passing a resolution. They go out of their way to pass a resolution saying they are opposed to gay marriage. Their ridiculous abortion things regardless of what that poll shows people don't want personhood amendments yet Republicans seem willing to pass personhood amendments to drive Planned Parenthood clinics, to do so much more than abortion out of business. It's crazy. And 31 republican Senators not even letting a vote be cast on background checks, just seems to me they are headed in, catapulting downward for them an alarming rate.

JANSING: Chip I know you're obviously the former campaign manager for Mike Huckabee who is against abortion in all cases including rape and incest. Is the Republican Party though committing mass suicide as the governor suggests. We saw how much trouble, how much conversation was raised to the negative for Republicans over things like Todd Aiken’s comments in the last go-round.

CHIP SALTSMAN: I have great respect for Governor Rendell but I just happen to disagree with him on this obviously. Look, I think one of the reasons we are gaining ground on the life issue is because we're talking about life beyond nine months. And I think for a long time it was about pro-life or pro-choice during those nine months. I think the Republican Party is talking about how life has value and we value that life not just in 9 months but for the rest of their life. And we talk about it as an economic issue. As an education issue. All those issues wrapped up and as you heard Paul Ryan say we want to broaden the coalition not keep people out of it. So I think Paul Ryan kind of has the right message. I think Governor Huckabee has the right message. When you talk about life issue you talk about the value of life and how it makes us uniquely American. I think is how much we do value life here.

JANSING: Well Governor there's messaging and there’s money and they are putting money behind this as well. The same group that hosted Paul Ryan the Susan B. Anthony list plans to target a couple of Senators, Kay Hagen of North Carolina, Mary Landrieu of Louisiana because they both support abortion rights. What about the money as opposed to the messaging and I guess to Chip's point the way they are trying to make this part of an overall economic issue.

RENDELL: Well they are and they aren't. They are pushing personhood amendments. In Mississippi probably the reddest of all red states 72% of the voters rejected the personhood amendment. They are doing crazy stuff. And if you change that poll Chris to do you believe abortion should be illegal even including cases of rape and incest, do you know that 52% would plummet to about 20%. So they are not in step with Americans. They are going way out of their way to do things that are absolutely crazy. Young voters, there's not going to be a young voter left with their position on gay marriage and with this stand against all abortion, it’s not going to be a young voter left who’s going to support the Republican Party.

Sexuality Abortion MSNBC Jansing & Co. Chris Jansing Ed Rendell Kermit Gosnell