Fact Check: Obama Ad Paints Romney, Ryan as Anti-Women

By Steve Kanigher

Published 08/24 2012 03:49PM

Updated 08/27 2012 11:44AM

Claim: An advertisement endorsed by President Barack Obama that is airing on KLAS-TV Channel 8 starts off with a reference to Republican rival Mitt Romney's choice of Rep. Paul Ryan as his running mate: "He's made his choice but what choices will women be left with? Just like Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan would get rid of Planned Parenthood funding. In Congress Ryan voted to ban all federal funding for Planned Parenthood and allow employers to deny women access to cancer screenings and birth control, and both Ryan and Romney back proposals to outlaw abortion, even in cases of rape and incest."

Verdict: Partly true and partly false. Romney and Ryan, both pro-life on the abortion issue, would cut off federal funding for Planned Parenthood. Ryan also has supported efforts to exempt certain employers, including religious groups, from having to provide free insurance coverage for birth control. The New York Times quoted Ryan as defending that position as a matter of religious liberty. A separate political and government Internet blog published by the Times reported Monday that Ryan has opposed abortion in the case of rape, and that when he first ran for Congress in 1998 the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel stated that he opposed abortions in all cases except to save the life of the mother. But the blog also reported that Romney believes abortion should be legal in cases of rape or incest. Following remarks from Republican Missouri Rep.and Senate nominee Todd Akin that women's bodies reject pregnancy in cases of what he called "legitimate rape," the blog reported that the Romney campaign not only disagreed with Akin, but also stated that it wouldn't oppose abortion in instances of rape.

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