Planned Parenthood buys DC airtime amid funding threat

Planned Parenthood has launched a paid ad campaign in the Washington, D.C., media market featuring a breast cancer survivor who says the organization saved her life.

The ad, which began airing on Thursday, is part of Planned Parenthood’s increasingly aggressive approach to protecting its federal funding in the wake of its undercover video scandal. It will be accompanied by an online digital buy, a spokeswoman said.

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It is the first paid advertisement run by Planned Parenthood since an anti-abortion group began releasing secretly recorded footage that it claims shows the women's health provider is ilegally profitting from a fetal donation program. 

The ad is airing ahead of a vote Monday in the Senate on ending federal funding for the organization.

"With all of the misinformation and deceptive attacks against the care Planned Parenthood provides, we thought it was important that legislators see the face of the women whose care they'd be defunding,” Dawn Laguens, executive vice president, said in a statement.

The 30-second spot features Brandi McWade, who has gone to Planned Parenthood since she was 17 years old for birth control and annual exams.

“With no insurance and my entire family across the country, Planned Parenthood took control and gave me direction when I was lost. I owe them my life,” McWade says in the ad.

A spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood declined to disclose the total cost of the ad buy.

With $500 million in federal funding at stake, Planned Parenthood is in a fight for its existence after secretly recorded footage about its fetal tissue program has grabbed headlines nationally.

Both House and Senate Republicans have vowed to vote to block the organization’s federal funding, which makes up 40 percent of its total budget.