House Panel Drops Report on Planned Parentood and StemExpress

By Gloria Taylor

This week, StemExpress dropped their suit against The Center For Medical Progress (CMP). CMP began releasing undercover videos during the summer of 2015 exposing the role of Planned Parenthood and StemExpress in selling aborted baby parts for profit. StemExpress’ decision to walk away comes on the heels of the The House Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives releasing their final 471 page report.

CMP’s undercover videos revealing the utterly inhumane actions of Planned Parenthood ignited the media firestorm that has kept the country’s largest abortion provider under continual criticism from conservatives. Given almost all of Planned Parenthood’s pregnancy care ends in an abortion and their opposition to  legislation saving babies born after a failed abortion, their lack of respect for the sanctity of life is all but surprising.

But watching their executives callously talk about mangling aborted babies demands action. One video showed  Planned Parenthood’s Director of Medical Services discussing, over a glass of wine, how to use the largely illegal partial-birth abortion procedure to provide intact baby parts. Additional videos exposed the selling of fully intact aborted babies and aborted parts without patient consent. One planned parenthood official joked about “want{ing} a lamborghini” as she negotiated prices for fetal tissue.

The heartbreaking and horrifying videos prompted House Republicans to investigate issues such as “medical procedures and business practices of entities involved in fetal tissue procurement, federal funding of abortion providers, and practices of providers of second and third trimester abortions.” The select committee’s report made fifteen referrals to law enforcement agencies for both criminal and regulatory violations by abortion clinics and tissue procurement partners. The panel found that multiple entities, including Planned Parenthood, profited from the sell of fetal tissue, changed abortion procedure to ensure certain tissue procurement, and violated patient privacy. Just as troubling were “eyewitness accounts of the doctor killing infants who show signs of life both when partially outside the birth canal in violation of the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act.”

After the panel reported that the former Planned Parenthood partner, StemExpress. likely destroyed documents subpoenaed by Congress, violated privacy and consent regulation and profited from fetal tissues sales, the decision to drop the case doesn’t come as surprise. The House report unequivocally shows wrongdoing by Planned Parenthood clinics across the country when it comes to compliance with both federal law and regulation in the fetal tissues industry. The Panel’s chair, Rep. Marsha Blackburn concluded the investigation saying: “It is my hope that our recommendations will result in some necessary changes within both the abortion and fetal tissue procurement industries.”

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