One again, a federal judge appears ready to side with some of America’s most powerful politicians and lobbyists over the undercover journalists who exposed Planned Parenthood’s aborted baby body parts harvesting practices.
Last year, David Daleiden and the Center for Medical Progress filed a lawsuit accusing Vice President Kamala Harris, new HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra, the California Attorney General’s Office, Planned Parenthood and others of a conspiracy to violate their First and Fourteenth Amendment civil rights.
The lawsuit accuses Harris and Becerra, both former state attorneys general, of using a state video-recording law as a “political weapon” to silence free speech as a favor to Planned Parenthood, a close political ally.
On Wednesday, however, U.S. District Judge William Orrick expressed skepticism about Daleiden’s lawsuit, Courthouse News reports. Orrick, an appointee of President Barack Obama, also has ties to Planned Parenthood and has refused to recuse himself from cases involving Daleiden, CMP and Planned Parenthood.
The judge said he probably will stay most of Daleiden’s claims because other cases involving him and Planned Parenthood are still being litigated, according to the report.
“It does make sense to me that a good portion of this case, if not the whole thing, ought to be stayed until we know what’s going to happen in the Ninth Circuit and the criminal case,” Orrick said.
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Daleiden’s lawyers said Becerra, Harris and others unfairly targeted him with a 1967 recording law that has not been used to prosecute any other undercover journalist in the state.
The California Attorney General’s Office is pursuing felony charges against Daleiden and fellow CMP undercover investigator Sandra Merritt, claiming they broke the law by filming conversations with abortionists and others without their consent. Daleiden and Merritt are facing possible jail time and fines if convicted.
The charges began with Harris when she served as California attorney general. Documents reveal that Harris, while running for U.S. Senate in 2016, had a secret, in-person meeting with Planned Parenthood leaders to discuss the investigation; two weeks later, the California Department of Justice raided Daleiden’s home. Harris also received campaign donations from Planned Parenthood at the time.
Becerra continued to prosecute Daleiden when Harris was elected to the U.S. Senate and later became vice president. Becerra now also is a top leader in President Joe Biden’s administration.
On Wednesday, lawyers for the state told Orrick that the attorney general’s office has immunity, so Daleiden and Merrit cannot sue them, according to Courthouse News.
Attorney Oscar Ramallo, who represents Planned Parenthood, also argued that Planned Parenthood did nothing wrong; it simply asked the California Attorney General’s Office to enforce state law, the report states.
“Private parties have a right to petition the government to enforce the laws,” Ramallo said. “That’s immunized unless their petition is beyond the pale of reasonableness.”
Orrick did not issue a ruling Wednesday, but he said Daleiden’s case seems “unlikely” to succeed.
According to the lawsuit, Daleiden wants “justice for a brazen, unprecedented, and ongoing conspiracy to selectively use California’s video recording laws as a political weapon to silence disfavored speech.”
His lawyers said he used common investigative journalism techniques in his investigation of Planned Parenthood, a billion-dollar abortion chain.
The lawsuit notes that Becerra admitted in 2018 that he is prosecuting Daleiden, and not other undercover journalists, because of the “shock value” of the undercover videos.
It also accuses Becerra and Harris of seeking to “chill other journalists from investigating” potential wrong-doing – something liberal news outlets and scholars criticized as well.
Animal rights groups also recently came to Daleiden’s and Merritt’s defense in a brief supporting their appeal of another case to the Ninth Circuit.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) and other animal rights advocacy organizations told the court that they have “a strong interest in ensuring that individuals remain able to use undercover methods to investigate and report on matters that might otherwise remain unavailable or inaccessible to the public, continuing an American tradition of important journalism conducted using undercover techniques.”
Daleiden’s undercover investigation shocked the world with its expose of Planned Parenthood’s baby body parts harvesting practices. It led to numerous state and federal investigations. U.S. Senate and House committee investigations both concluded with referrals to the Department of Justice for criminal prosecution.
Two of Planned Parenthood’s business partners in Orange County, California also admitted to selling aborted baby body parts in a $7.8 million settlement with the county district attorney’s office.
“CMP’s undercover reporting has been corroborated by the successful prosecution of fetal body parts sales we reported in southern California, multiple Congressional investigations, and forensic video analysis,” Daleiden said. “It is every reporter’s First Amendment right to underscore the gravity of their findings, especially when the politically powerful disagree with them.”
Not only did the Center for Medical Progress investigation raise concerns about potentially illegal sales of human body parts at Planned Parenthood, but it also uncovered evidence of abortionists allegedly putting women’s lives at greater risk by altering abortion procedures to better harvest aborted baby parts. The investigators also found evidence of possible patient privacy violations.
Planned Parenthood has denied all allegations of wrong-doing, and many news outlets now parrot its talking points that the undercover videos were deceptively edited or debunked, even though that is not true. An independent forensics investigation verified that the videos were authentic.
Some undercover videos show how Planned Parenthood employees callously and flippantly negotiated the price of tiny baby hearts, lungs, livers and brains. Other evidence indicates the abortion giant may have broken HIPAA patient privacy laws.
The expose videos catching Planned Parenthood officials selling the body parts of aborted babies have shocked the nation. Here is a list of all 14:
- 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.
- The 13th video: exposes a Planned Parenthood medical director admitting that babies born alive after abortion are sometimes killed.
- The 14th video: catches Planned Parenthood executives discussing gruesome abortion procedures and the sale of body parts from aborted babies for profit.