Onion article makes congressman weep

It’s hard to take an Onion article seriously, but it’s even harder if you do and you’re a U.S. congressman.

U.S. Rep. John Fleming

U.S. Rep. John Fleming

TheAtlanticWire.com reports the unfortunate turn of events for U.S. Rep. John Fleming (R-Louisiana) who is alleged to have taken as legit an Onion article bearing the headline “Planned Parenthood Opens $8 billion Abortionplex.”

Fleming, or his staff, posted a link to the article on his Facebook page with the message “More on Planned Parenthood, abortion by the wholesale.”

A Facebook commenter quickly opined — “The Onion is satire. How exactly did you get elected?”

Fleming’s spokesperson told Politico.com the post had been removed from Facebook but had no further comment.

The Abortionplex article is not new, it first appeared in 2011, but the article was making the rounds again in wake of the Susan G. Komen/Planned Parenthood imbroglio.

It’s also not new that Onion articles are taken way too seriously.

In 2002, one of China’s most popular newspapers republished a bogus story saying Congress would move to Memphis or Charlotte unless a new Capitol building with a retractable dome was constructed.

Onion editor Joe Randazzo said the publication is proud to count Fleming as a reader.

“We’re delighted to hear that Rep. Fleming is a regular reader of America’s Finest News Source and doesn’t bother himself with The New York Times, Washington Post, the mediums of television and radio, or any other lesser journalism outlets,” he said in a statement.

25 comments Add your comment

Devil's Advocate

February 10th, 2012
12:37 pm


February 10th, 2012
12:47 pm



February 10th, 2012
12:54 pm

This is what we elect to Congress – this story says it all.

No wonder there is political gridlock – can’t get their heads out of their backsides long enough to separate fantasy from reality.

Maybe Onion can concoct a bogus story about how the nation is about to implode, massive unemployment, financial turmoil, housing issues – that way Congress might finally sit down and do something right.

Wait – Onion can’t do that, it’s reality, not satire! Good job Onion and hope Congressman Fleming has to deal with this mess for a long time – that old saying about being promoted to your highest level of incompetence must be true – as the great Bugs Bunny would say – what a maroon!


February 10th, 2012
12:59 pm

At least he didn’t say Guam might capsize if too many people were on it like Hank Johnson. I wonder if The Onion runs a story that Guam has in fact capsized would Hank call a press conference to say “I told you so.”


February 10th, 2012
1:14 pm

Does this guy not have one staffer that is less than 30 years old who could have told him about the Onion?


February 10th, 2012
1:15 pm

Oh Lord… I am ashamed to say, I was born in Louisiana.
JW, I love your comment. Elmer Fudd would be proud of this guy.


February 10th, 2012
1:26 pm

his face says it all


February 10th, 2012
1:27 pm

typical walmart republican, they’re all alike


February 10th, 2012
1:28 pm

Stupid liberal… Oh wait.


February 10th, 2012
1:28 pm

Note that the date on the original story from The Atlantic Wire was Feb. 6. This has been making the rounds all week and the AJC is just reporting it now?

Jack Donaghee

February 10th, 2012
1:33 pm

Rep. Fleming is not a spokesperson for nor do his views represent those of the Sheinhart Wig Co.
The views expressed are solely those of Rep. Fleming.


February 10th, 2012
1:57 pm

Let’s get the Onion to run an article on how the American taxpayer has run out of money.

Look before I leap...

February 10th, 2012
2:12 pm

There is a saying about entertainers, any publicity is good publicity.
For a congress-critter, not so much.

Read this several days ago, its still pretty funny.

That Dude Devin

February 10th, 2012
2:50 pm

Earnet Flemmingway, Mark Spitz, Drool Berrymore, Brad Spitts, Dr Drool Little, George Mucas…

Frank Furter

February 10th, 2012
2:50 pm

i who

February 10th, 2012
2:53 pm

will the congressman’s people sue the onion for something or order them shutdown by federal people?

Atlanta Native

February 10th, 2012
3:23 pm

On a more serious note, does anyone know why insurance companies and companies that receive federal funds allow “erective dysfunction” medications to be readily covered for MEN, but won’t allow coverage of birth control medications for WOMEN? In other words, they’ll cover something that makes men want to experience pleasure, but if women want pleasure (and not a baby) they are denied. Maybe those Viagra bottles should come with a pack of condoms…


February 10th, 2012
4:06 pm

Nice hair piece!


February 10th, 2012
4:30 pm

Everyone on three! USA! USA! USA!


February 10th, 2012
4:40 pm

Obviously, Fleming’s response was not intended to be factual.



February 12th, 2012
2:43 am

In the words of another famous Louisianian, what we’ve got here is a failure to communicate.


February 17th, 2012
9:09 am

What’s really interesting here, I think, is not that he believed a fake article. It’s *why* he believed a fake article.

Despite Planned Parenthood’s budget, in which only 3 percent of what they do is abortion, some people *only* see abortion when they look at the organization.

It’s one thing to be so ideologically opposed to abortion that you don’t support PP. It’s another to completely ignore the facts about PP because you don’t like 3 percent of its work.


February 17th, 2012
11:11 am

This is silly. You mean he doesn’t read snarky fake news and this makes him unintelligent?



March 9th, 2012
3:26 pm

i didn’t know they were planning to move the capitol if they didn’t get a retractable dome?

Avery Decastro

March 13th, 2012
5:41 pm

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