Dr. Leana Wen at the Baltimore Women’s March in January 20, 2018.
Photo credit: Elvert Barnes (CC-By-SA 2.0)

Dr. Leana Wen was forced out as President and CEO of Planned Parenthood of America and Planned Parenthood Action after being at the helm only eight months. Prior to joining Planned Parenthood, Wen was the Commissioner of Health for the city of Baltimore, Md.

She announced she was canned on Twitter.

Wen then offered a statement.

She wrote, “I believe that the best way to protect abortion care is to be clear that it is not a political issue but a health care one, and that we can expand support for reproductive rights by finding common ground with the large majority of Americans who under stand reproductive health care as the fundamental health care that it is.”

Wen added she had philosophical differences with the board chairs.

Planned Parenthood has taken a hit in funding over the last two years with the Trump administration successfully defunding the abortion giant and several states doing so as well. Also, several states have passed abortion bans, and pro-abortion advocates are fearful that the Supreme Court is poised to reverse Roe v. Wade.

The Washington Post reported Tuesday afternoon that those close to Wen say she was forced out because she did not advocate abortion enough.

People familiar with Wen’s position said she has been battling over the organization’s direction with new board chair Aimee Cunningham almost since Cunningham arrived in May. Wen had tried to refocus the organization’s mission and image as a health provider offering a wide array of services, including abortions, they said. She replaced a number of the organization’s top officials with people who supported that approach.

Those close to Wen said she was opposed by some board members and others who wanted to emphasize the organization’s commitment to abortion rights.

I disagree how much common ground can be found on this issue or that there is a large majority who see abortion as she does as polling indicates a majority of Americans want to see some abortion restrictions.

Those familiar with the board’s perspective say, essentially, she’s a lousy manager.

But a person aware of the board’s perspective said the organization had been working with Wen for six months to correct “ongoing misalignment with the mission, creating a culture of suspicion and mistrust among staff.”

The person, who requested anonymity because board members were the only ones authorized to speak for Planned Parenthood, said Wen had a “very insular style” and micro-managed work that was “not in her areas of expertise.”

“Ongoing misalignment with the mission” indicates a philosophical issue and I don’t believe for a minute the board made a change after eight months solely based on Wen’s leadership style.

While she may be a lousy CEO, but I think it’s pretty clear the Planned Parenthood board wanted a greater focus on abortion rights. That is the direction the left has embraced so it’s hard to believe that isn’t where the Planned Parenthood board is headed.

This news reinforces for me that Planned Parenthood is not about health care, it’s about expanding taxpayer-funded abortion on demand at any stage in the pregnancy for any reason.

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1 comment
  1. I presented the following quiz to some members of the Warren County Republican Central Committee:

    QUESTION: Who said the following:

    “Birth Control is not Abortion”. [1]
    “Knowledge to prevent conception is the only cure for abortion”[2]
    “I do claim that the hundreds of thousands of abortions being performed in America each year is a disgrace to civilization.”[3]
    “If women had the knowledge how to prevent conception, there would be almost no necessity for abortions”[4]
    Who referred to abortion as “the murder of unborn children”? [5]
    Who referred to both infanticide and abortion as “the most barbaric methods [of birth control” and as “the killing of babies”? [6]

    ANSWER: Margaret Sanger, Founder of Planned Parenthood.


    1. Margaret Sanger, “Birth Control (Chicago Address to Women) ,” Apr- May 1916. https://sangerpapers.org/documents/show.php?sangerDoc=236132.xml

    2. Margaret Sanger, “Birth Control (Chicago Address to Women) ,” Apr- May 1916. https://sangerpapers.org/documents/show.php?sangerDoc=236132.xml

    3. Margaret Sanger, “English Methods of Birth Control,” Jan 1915. https://sangerpapers.org/documents/show.php?sangerDoc=128063.xml. See also
    Margaret Sanger, “Condemnation is Misunderstanding,” Apr-July 1916. https://sangerpapers.org/documents/show.php?sangerDoc=128003.xml (“All modern physicians testify that. . . abortion is a disgrace to a civilized community.”}

    4. Margaret Sanger, “English Methods of Birth Control,” Jan 1915. https://sangerpapers.org/documents/show.php?sangerDoc=128063.xml

    5. Margaret Sanger, “A Better Race Through Birth Control,” Nov 1923. https://sangerpapers.org/documents/show.php?sangerDoc=306638.xml . The actual quote is:
    “Birth Control will prevent abortion. It will do away with the practice of taking drugs and poisonous nostrums to end undesired pregnancies. It will put an end to the tens of thousands of illegal operations to which women resort in despair. Mothers will not submit to the murder of unborn children when they can control conception.”

    6. Margaret Sanger, “Hotel Brevoort Speech,” 17 Jan 1916. https://sangerpapers.org/documents/show.php?sangerDoc=128167.xml The actual quote is:
    “BUT, all during the long years while this matter was being ↑has been↓ discussed, advocated, refuted, the people themselves–the poor people especially–were blindly, desperately practicing family limitation–just as they are practicing it today.

    BUT To them birth control does not mean what it does to us.

    TO THEM it has meant the most barbaric methods. It has meant the killing of babies–infanticide,–abortions,–in one crude way or another.”


    I do not intend to make Margaret Sanger some sort of moral authority. Much of her opposition to abortion was premised on the death and health toll it took on poor women, but it is also clear that she saw it as reprehensible in itself, even though some abortions may have been medically necessary. Otherwise it would not have been described by her as “killing” and “murder” of children or as something which needed a “cure”. It is fascinating to contrast her comments with the positions of the pro-choice movement, Planned Parenthood, and the modern Democratic Party which legalize and celebrate abortion through the due date and even has some, such as the governor of Virginia, Ralph Northam, who say infanticide is allowable.

Comments are closed.

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