Fox's Neil Cavuto Falsely Claims Deceptively-Edited Videos Smearing Planned Parenthood “Were Not Edited”
Fox News Senior Vice President Neil Cavuto promoted a series of deceptively-edited videos released by the anti-choice Center for Medial Progress (CMP) by claiming that the tapes “were not edited or strung together.” In fact, CMP's videos were deceptively edited in numerous instances, including in cases of videos described by CMP as “full footage.”
During the September 25 broadcast of his Fox Business Network show Cavuto: Coast to Coast, Cavuto responded to critics pointing out that the CMP videos are edited and “did not represent what Planned Parenthood was really about” by falsely claiming, “I made a point when these [CMP] videos came out of picking any one of them -- which were not edited or strung together -- picking out an objectionable part and playing it at home. There was not a lot of doctoring going on there.” Cavuto then hosted CMP founder David Daleiden, giving him a platform to promote falsehoods about Planned Parenthood and the CMP video stings:
During the segment, Cavuto asked Daleiden about critics' claims CMP's tapes are “strung together, doctored, and edited,” leading Daleiden to claim, “The fact is we post the full footage of the conversations with the Planned Parenthood directors and executives on our YouTube channel for everybody to see.”
In reality, an independent analysis commissioned by Planned Parenthood and conducted by forensic experts of the first seven CMP-released videos found “42 instances in which CMP edited out content from the short as well as so-called full versions of the tapes.” Multiple other sources have come to the same conclusion and official investigations have cleared Planned Parenthood of any wrongdoing.
Daleiden also said on the program: “It's been a good 15 years” since the issue of illegal sales of fetal tissue has been discussed. He did not mention that he modeled his own campaign against Planned Parenthood based on the work done 15 years ago by the discredited anti-choice group Life Dynamics whose star witness, a medical technician named Lawrence Dean Alberty, admitted to lying to Life Dynamics about having witnessed illegal activity involving fetal tissue collection and profiteering.
The veracity of what is “unedited video” from the Center for Medical Progress has become an issue in light of a subpoena issued on September 23 by Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), the Chair of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, requesting from CMP “all unedited video footage in their possession, relating to the acquisition, preparation and sale of fetal tissue.” Several GOP-led House committees have announced or begun hearings following the release of CMP's deceptively-edited videos targeting Planned Parenthood, leading to calls from some Republicans to shut down the federal government if Planned Parenthood is not defunded by Congress.
On September 25, attorneys for Planned Parenthood submitted a letter to both Chaffetz and House Oversight Committee Ranking Member Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD), which included a document from former FBI forensic video/audio analyst Douglas Lacey, pointing out the committee's request of footage from CMP was not specific enough. According to this expert, “source footage” is needed from the anti-choice group -- “the actual original recording saved on the recording device” - and only upon review of that will the committee be able to “verify with any confidence the authenticity of a video recording and determine whether it has been edited or altered.”
The letter “urge[d] the Committee to insist that Mr. Daleiden and CMP produce nothing short of the complete, original 'source footage' from each device used to record Planned Parenthood personnel.”