Carly Fiorina, former Hewlett-Packard CEO turned Republican presidential candidate, has been praised by conservatives for her performance during the second GOP debate on Sept. 16 (video below).
One of those lauded moments came when Fiorina challenged Democrats to watch a graphic video secretly filmed at Planned Parenthood by the anti-abortion group Center for Medical Progress, notes The Washington Post.
"As regards to Planned Parenthood, anyone who has watched this video tape, I dare Hillary Clinton, Barak Obama to watch these tapes. Watch a fully formed fetus on the table, its heart beating, its legs kicking, while someone says we have to keep it alive to harvest its brain."
Sarah Kliff, a journalist at Vox, reports she has watched all 12 hours of the undercover videos and notes: "The things Fiorina describes — the legs kicking, the intact 'fully formed fetus,' the heart beating, the remarks about having to 'harvest its brain' — are pure fiction."
Kliff adds, "Either Fiorina hasn't watched the Planned Parenthood videos or she is knowingly misrepresenting the footage. Because what she says happens in the Planned Parenthood videos simply does not exist."
The Washington Post confirmed that no such video exists in the Planned Parenthood tapes.
On the Sept. 17 broadcast of "Good Morning America," host George Stephanopoulos told Fiorina that analysts had watched all 12 hours of the videos and concluded the scenes she described did not appear. Stephanopoulos asked Fiorina if she had misspoken, reports MediaMatters.org, and Fiorina replied:
"No, I didn't misspeak and I don't know who you're speaking about in terms of watching the tapes, but I have seen those images. I don't know whether you've watched the tapes, George, most people haven't.
"Certainly none of the Democrats who are still defending Planned Parenthood have watched those tapes. Planned Parenthood needs to be defended. This kind of butchery erodes at the character of our nation."
Fiorina didn't back up her claim that "none of the Democrats" who defend Planned Parenthood had watched the tapes, and later added:
"Well, you know, there's a lot of commentary about these tapes being doctored. In fact, that's what the mainstream media keeps talking about is the tapes and their origin. Rest assured I have seen the images that I talked about last night.
"Rest assured that human lives are being aborted fully formed in order to harvest body parts. Rest assured that this erodes at the character of our nation, and once again I will say, I dare Mrs. Clinton and President Obama, two defenders of Planned Parenthood, to watch these videotapes."
Kliff reports there are another series of videos entitled "Human Capital" released by Center for Medical Progress, which use "stock footage of a fetus kicking on a table — though that footage isn't from inside a Planned Parenthood."
Kliff adds the "Human Capital" video cites "the Center for Bioethical Reform and the Grantham Collection as the sources for that footage, and never claims to have taped those images themselves."
Kliff notes the "Human Capital" video does include an interview with Holly O'Donnell, who worked with StemExpress, a former partner of Planned Parenthood, who claimed to have witnessed a fetus with a beating heart.
Kliff says there is no video that depicts what O'Donnell recalled, nor is there any video with a Planned Parenthood employee saying: "Keep it alive so we can harvest its brain."
Kliff contacted Fiorina's campaign for comment, but has not received a response.