- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Twelve Senate Republicans have called for a “full investigation” of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, citing two undercover videos made by a pro-life group.

One video with a senior Planned Parenthood doctor appears to have her “discussing the payments received by abortion clinics as compensation for the transfer of fetal tissue from the clinics to scientific researchers,” Sen. Mike Lee, Utah Republican, and 10 other Republican senators said in a letter sent Tuesday to Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell.

The video also shows conversation about “the alteration of abortion procedures to obtain intact organs,” the letter said.

Specifically, Dr. Deborah Nucatola’s statements in the video suggest that sections 498A and 498B of the Public Health Service Act may have been violated, the senators said.

Section 498A requires doctors to certify that they did not alter the method or timing of an abortion for the purpose of obtaining human fetal tissue when that tissue is used in research conducted or supported by the National Institute of Health, while Section 498B prohibits the sale of human fetal issue.

A “full investigation” is needed on whether Planned Parenthood has violated federal laws prohibiting the sale of human fetal tissue for profit, said Mr. Lee and Republican Sens. David Vitter of Louisiana, Ted Cruz of Texas, Tom Cotton of Arkansas, Rand Paul of Kentucky, Marco Rubio of Florida, John Boozman of Arkansas, James Lankford of Oklahoma, Rob Portman of Ohio, Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, and Jeff Sessions of Alabama.

Separately, Sen. Orrin Hatch, Utah Republican, called for a federal investigation of Planned Parenthood following release of a second video from the pro-life Center for Medical Progress that depicts another Planned Parenthood official discussing the sale of fetal body parts.

Taken together, the videos show Planned Parenthood officials “discussing the sale of unborn baby parts as casually as a mechanic might seek to sell car parts,” Mr. Hatch said. “Congress must investigate whether Planned Parenthood, which receives hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars each year, is complying with applicable laws and regulations.”

Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards said the videos were heavily edited and that charges were only for “actual costs” of shipping the fetal tissues.

Roger K. Evans, senior counsel of Planned Parenthood, has also written to House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton, Michigan Republican, to explain how Planned Parenthood is conducting its practices within the law.

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