After years of investigations that began primarily due to whistleblower videos, the FBI has finally decided to investigate Planned Parenthood for trafficking in human remains from abortion. Between that and the Center for Medical Progress’s latest undercover video showing how PP colluded with medical company StemExpress to sell the most aborted baby parts for the most profit, the GOP should finally defund this shady organization that still receives a large guaranteed taxpayer subsidy.
Last week, The Hill reported that the FBI is seeking thousands of pages of unredacted documents from the Senate Judiciary Committee’s investigation and criminal referrals of Planned Parenthood and StemExpress. Attorney General Jeff Sessions confirmed in congressional testimony that the referrals’ findings could form the basis of criminal charges against Planned Parenthood and StemExpress, once verified by the Department of Justice.
Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, which referred Planned Parenthood to the FBI for investigation last December. Fox News reported that “‘The report documents the failure of the Department of Justice, across multiple administrations, to enforce the law that bans the buying and selling of human fetal tissue,’ Grassley wrote last December asking both the Justice Department and the FBI to investigate. ‘…It also documents substantial evidence suggesting that the specific entities involved in the recent controversy, and/or individuals employed by those entities, may have violated that law.’”
Few mainstream news sources have reported that the FBI appears to be readying for a probe into Planned Parenthood. The fact that most mainstream news sources have consistently backed the entity explains this unfortunate lack of parity. Surely if a GOP “pet cause” or politician were found guilty of a crime or were under FBI investigation, every mainstream outlet would be broadcasting the fact daily.
Whistleblowers Unveil a New Video
The FBI has taken in interest in PP primarily due to the myriad undercover videos CMP has produced over the last several years. The first round of videos, which came out nearly three years ago, were explosive and damning. They revealed PP executives haggling over prices for human body parts—such as brain, liver, and hearts—harvested from the human remains PP abortion centers generate. Recently, CMP has been slowly but steadily unveiling new videos, this time about PP’s relationship with StemExpress, a medical procurement company whose employees dissected aborted babies to obtain these parts.
According to whistleblower Holly O’Donnell, who worked for StemExpress, StemExpress workers were “embedded” in PP clinics to save money. They used private patient medical files leaked to them by Planned Parenthood management to locate women who could meet their body parts order quotas for the day through their scheduled abortions.
Inside PP abortion facilities, StemExpress workers would then dissect the aborted fetuses, package the desired organs, and ship them via FedEx to StemExpress, which sold them to medical researchers. Contrary to PP’s explanation, the organization received payment from StemExpress for each fetal organ “determined in the clinic to be usable.” StemExpress paid its technicians a bonus depending on the number and type of body parts harvested, O’Donnell says.
In the latest video, O’Donnell says she witnessed coworkers take fetal body parts without patient consent from abortions at Planned Parenthood: “If there was like a high-gestated fetus, I have witnessed there was no consent signed, and these women didn’t know that it was getting taken,” revealed O’Donnell. “It’s stealing, it’s stealing baby parts.”
Federal law currently requires parental consent before blood spots from newborn screenings are used in federally funded research. Ironically, President Obama signed the Newborn Screening Saves Lives Reauthorization Act of 2014 that established this legal requirement for consent. Besides the creepiness and ethical questions at play in its business activities, Planned Parenthood should not be operating under different rules, hence the FBI’s move to investigate.
The GOP Should Finally Defund Planned Parenthood
If the GOP wanted to show any ability whatsoever to follow through on previous commitments, they would work to defund PP. In light of recent information, this shouldn’t be that hard to do. The GOP could use the FBI’s investigation and the incriminating evidence found in the dozens of CMP videos, which led the House Oversight Committee to investigate PP, as a jumpoff point to tuck an amendment into current legislation, or draft something separately.
After more than a year of nationwide investigation last December, the Senate Judiciary Committee and the House Select Investigative Panel referred StemExpress and its business partners Planned Parenthood Mar Monte, Planned Parenthood Northern California, and Planned Parenthood Federation of America to the FBI and U.S. Department of Justice for further investigation and criminal prosecution.
The GOP’s inability to summon enough political will to defund Planned Parenthood is inexplicable. While Americans are relatively divided on whether abortion should be legal, clear majorities oppose taxpayer funding for it and late-term abortions such as those that generate the most fetal body part dollars for Planned Parenthood.
Besides polling results and the imperative to fulfill a major campaign promise to Republican ovters, defunding Planned Parenthood is clearly the right thing to do. Planned Parenthood embodies a culture of death. Any institution that kills then dissects humans to profit from their body parts does not deserve taxpayer dollars. How many other gruesome videos does the Center for Medical Progress have to release before the GOP shows some backbone and no longer subsidizes 300,000 abortions a year with taxpayer money?