Democrats Lose Vote to Shut Down Congressional Investigation of Planned Parenthood

National   |   Steven Ertelt, Micaiah Bilger   |   May 18, 2016   |   10:07AM   |   Washington, DC

House Democrats lost a vote late Tuesday in their attempt to shut down the Congressional investigation of Planned Parenthood and sales of body part from aborted babies.

Pro-abortion Democrats aren’t giving up their efforts to thwart an investigation of Planned Parenthood, despite mounting evidence that it profited from the sale of baby body parts and deceived women. Earlier this month, 98 Democrats in Congress signed a letter to Speaker Paul Ryan and panel chair Rep. Marsha Blackburn demanding that they dismantle the Congressional panel that is investigating the abortion industry.

Yesterday, the House Appropriations Committee considered the appropriations bill that funds Congress. During the vote on the legislation, pro-abortion Rep. Betty McCollum (D-MN) offered an amendment to shut down the Select Panel on Infant Lives. Rep. Andy Harris (R-MD), a pro-life physician, who serves both on the Appropriations Committee and the Select Panel, spoke against the measure explaining some of the work done by the Select Panel so far.  The amendment failed by a vote of 20-28 with Republican Rep. David Jolly (R-FL) voting with Democrats.

With the panel’s million intact, it will continue the investigation with a new focus on late-term abortion practitioner LeRoy Carhart.

Congress formed the Select Panel on Infant Lives to investigate abortion industry practices after a series of undercover videos showed top Planned Parenthood officials discussing the trafficking of aborted babies’ body parts. In the past few months, the panel has uncovered evidence that the abortion business deceived women on its consent forms and illegally profited from the sale of aborted babies’ body parts.

But pro-abortion Democrats have ignored this evidence and continued to attack the investigative effort.

In the letter written by U.S. Reps. Bill Foster and Zoe Lofgren, they accused pro-life legislators on the panel of “endanger[ing] health care providers and patients with its extreme rhetoric claiming that Planned Parenthood is selling baby parts.” They also accused them of “intimidating” scientific researchers who are using fetal tissue in research by subpoenaing documents from research groups that worked with abortion clinics.

“It is clear that this Panel serves no other purpose than to carry out politically-motivated attacks on Planned Parenthood and it should be dissolved immediately,” they wrote.

In addition, they blamed pro-life legislators for attempting to stall scientific research using aborted babies’ body parts that they claim could help find cures for diseases and save lives. However, Blackburn previously pointed out to LifeNews that life-saving medical advances are being made without using aborted babies’ body parts.

Politicians who signed the letter include Democratic Party Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who once refused to say if she would support abortions on viable 7-pound babies, and Chaka Fattah, a Pennsylvania Congressman currently on trial for federal corruption.

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The abortion industry has been influencing Democrats on the panel to stymie the investigation, too. U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky, D-Illinois, who was appointed to the panel, has numerous ties to abortion advocates that she did not disclose as conflicts of interest. Her husband, for example, is the partner at a political firm whose top clients include Planned Parenthood, NARAL and some of the other major abortion groups in the nation, according to The Federalist. Other Democrats on the panel also received campaign donations from the abortion chain.

Despite pro-abortion politicians’ claims and their efforts to thwart the investigation, the panel has uncovered evidence of the abortion group breaking the law.

Recently, a new white paper on the pricing of aborted baby parts from the House Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives revealed Planned Parenthood appears to be breaking the law. The document points out that “to profit from the acquisition or transfer of fetal tissue violates Title 42 USC §289 g-2, which prohibits the transfer of any fetal tissue for valuable consideration that exceeds the reasonable costs associated with the procurement.”

The white paper and accompanying exhibits show that the middleman company StemExpress does all of the work to transfer the aborted baby parts — making it so Planned Parenthood is spared any significant expense, thus leaving it with pure profit from the sale of the parts.

“The [abortion clinic] has no costs so the payments from the [procurement business] to the [abortion clinic] are pure profit,” the report concludes. “All costs are born by the [procurement business] or the customer. The payments from the customer to the PB exceed its cost by a factor of 300 to 400 percent.”

The document also reveals 1 in 5 abortion clinics, whether they were affiliated with Planned Parenthood or independent abortion centers, were selling the body parts of aborted babies when CMP began exposing the sales at Planned Parenthood. This contradicts Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richard’s statement that only 1 percent of her abortion clinics were involved in “fetal tissue donation.”

Blackburn told LifeNews in April: “The release of videos last summer raised the question of whether abortion clinics and middleman tissue procurement businesses were profiting from the sale of baby body parts, organs and tissues. When questions are being raised about the possibility that a federal statute has been violated, Congress has a duty to the taxpayers to find the facts and get to the bottom of what is actually going on.”

The expose’ videos catching Planned Parenthood officials selling the body parts of aborted babies have shocked the nation. Here is a list of all twelve:

  • In the first video: Dr. Deborah Nucatola of Planned Parenthood commented on baby-crushing: “We’ve been very good at getting heart, lung, liver, because we know that, so I’m not gonna crush that part, I’m gonna basically crush below, I’m gonna crush above, and I’m gonna see if I can get it all intact.”
  • In the second video: Planned Parenthood’s Dr. Mary Gatter joked, “I want a Lamborghini” as she negotiated the best price for baby parts.
  • In the third video: Holly O’Donnell, a former Stem Express employee who worked inside a Planned Parenthood clinic, detailed first-hand the unspeakable atrocities and how she fainted in horror over handling baby legs.
  • In the fourth video: Planned Parenthood’s Dr. Savita Ginde stated, “We don’t want to do just a flat-fee (per baby) of like, $200. A per-item thing works a little better, just because we can see how much we can get out of it.” She also laughed while looking at a plate of fetal kidneys that were “good to go.”
  • In the fifth video: Melissa Farrell of Planned Parenthood-Gulf Coast in Houston boasted of Planned Parenthood’s skill in obtaining “intact fetal cadavers” and how her “research” department “contributes so much to the bottom line of our organization here, you know we’re one of the largest affiliates, our Research Department is the largest in the United States.”
  • In the sixth video: Holly O’Donnell described technicians taking fetal parts without patient consent: “There were times when they would just take what they wanted. And these mothers don’t know. And there’s no way they would know.”
  • In the seventh and perhaps most disturbing video: Holly O’Donnell described the harvesting, or “procurement,” of organs from a nearly intact late-term fetus aborted at Planned Parenthood Mar Monte’s Alameda clinic in San Jose, CA. “‘You want to see something kind of cool,’” O’Donnell says her supervisor asked her. “And she just taps the heart, and it starts beating. And I’m sitting here and I’m looking at this fetus, and its heart is beating, and I don’t know what to think.”
  • In the eighth video: StemExpress CEO Cate Dyer admits Planned Parenthood sells “a lot of” fully intact aborted babies.
  • The ninth video: catches a Planned Parenthood medical director discussing how the abortion company sells fully intact aborted babies — including one who “just fell out” of the womb.
  • The 10th video: catches the nation’s biggest abortion business selling specific body parts — including the heart, eyes and “gonads” of unborn babies. The video also shows the shocking ways in which Planned Parenthood officials admit that they are breaking federal law by selling aborted baby body parts for profit.
  • Unreleased Videos: Unreleased videos from CMP show Deb Vanderhei of Planned Parenthood caught on tape talking about how Planned Parenthood abortion business affiliates may “want to increase revenue [from selling baby parts] but we can’t stop them…” Another video has a woman talking about the “financial incentives” of selling aborted baby body parts.
  • The 11th video: catches a Texas Planned Parenthood abortionist planning to sell the intact heads of aborted babies for research. Amna Dermish is caught on tape describing an illegal partial-birth abortion procedure to terminate living, late-term unborn babies which she hopes will yield intact fetal heads for brain harvesting.
  • The 12th video in the series shows new footage of Jennefer Russo, medical director at Planned Parenthood in Orange County, California, describing to undercover investigators how her abortion business tries to harvest intact aborted babies’ bodies for a local for-profit biotech company and changes the abortion procedure to do so.