Almost 65 members of Congress called for an investigation Tuesday into allegations that aborted babies may be being born alive and their organs harvested for scientific research through a taxpayer-funded project at the University of Pittsburgh.
“We are alarmed by public records obtained by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) which show that the University of Pittsburgh (Pitt) may have violated federal law by altering abortion procedures to harvest organs from babies who were old enough to live outside the womb,” the lawmakers wrote in a letter to the Biden administration.
The university is facing growing scrutiny after Judicial Watch and the Center for Medical Progress exposed evidence of babies potentially being born alive in abortions and other disturbing practices at the university. The evidence came from documents they obtained from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services through a Freedom of Information Act request.
U.S. Rep. Lisa McClain, a Michigan Republican who helped craft the letter, said she was disgusted when she learned about the allegations earlier this summer.
“I’m disgusted these researchers may have harvested the organs of babies who were born alive,” McClain told Fox News. “Scientists should never put their research over a human life. We need a full investigation into what happened …”
Pennsylvania pro-life leaders thanked lawmakers for taking action.
“The Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation welcomes this effort by a number of U.S. Senators and Congressional Representatives to find answers to the questions about allegations of unethical research at the University of Pittsburgh,” said Maria Gallagher, legislative director of the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation.
The letter is addressed to Attorney General Merrick Garland, HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra and National Institutes of Health Director Francis Collins. Lawmakers asked the Biden administration leaders to conduct a full investigation into the University of Pittsburgh’s GenitoUrinary Developmental Molecular Anatomy Project (GUDMPA), which received at least $1.5 million in taxpayer funding.
The program involves obtaining kidneys, bladders and other organs from aborted babies for scientific research, according to government documents. In its funding application to the federal government, the university said it wanted to become a “tissue hub and collection site” for “fetal tissue,” meaning aborted baby body parts.
In their letter Tuesday, the lawmakers expressed numerous concerns about the university project, including the possibility that abortions may be being altered illegally for the sole purpose of harvesting aborted babies’ organs and that babies may be being born alive in some cases.
“Exploiting the body parts of aborted children for research purposes is repulsive and should stop, regardless of the outcome hoped for by researchers,” the lawmakers wrote. “Research using abortive fetal tissue is unethical, wrong, and has also been proven ineffective.”
Earlier, the Center for Medical Progress and several doctors, including one who supports abortion, pointed to documents and statements from university officials that suggest some aborted babies’ hearts still may be beating when their organs are harvested for scientific research.
In August, a University of Pittsburgh spokesman called the allegations “irresponsible and false” in a statement to Fox News. He said the university and its partners comply with all laws, and the university itself does not perform abortions.
But the university has been using Americans’ tax dollars to pay for its “tissue hub” for aborted baby body parts for years. According to the documents obtained by Judicial Watch and the Center for Medical Progress, the university requested $3.2 million over a five-year period in 2015, and it has received at least $2.7 million so far.
The Center for Medical Progress said the university documents and statements confirm that some aborted babies’ hearts still are beating while their kidneys are harvested for scientific research.
“Pitt is now admitting to the news media that the aborted babies are still alive at the time their kidneys are cut out for [National Institutes of Health] grant money,” said David Daleiden, founder and president of the Center for Medical Progress.
In grant application documents provided by the federal government, the University of Pittsburgh mentions “labor induction” as a “procedure that will be used to obtain the tissue,” according to the Center for Medical Progress.
Labor induction abortions are basically what they sound like; the abortionist typically injects the poison digoxin into the unborn baby’s heart and then induces labor so that the mother gives birth to her dead baby’s body. This method is used in later second- and third-trimester abortions.
If digoxin is not used – and the Center for Medical Progress found that scientists want “fetal tissue” without digoxin because the poison interferes with their research, there is a chance of the baby being born alive. One study estimated up to 50 percent of labor-induction abortions without digoxin can result in an infant born alive.
Previously, LifeNews and other pro-lifers exposed a disturbing experiment at the University of Pittsburgh that involved scalping babies aborted at five months and then implanting their scalps onto rodents to study the human immune system. The information comes from a study that University of Pittsburgh researchers published in 2020 in the journal “Scientific Reports.”