Justice Department Requests ‘Unredacted’ Findings of Senate Investigation That Included Planned Parenthood

By Rachel del Guidice, Reporter for The Daily Signal.

The Department of Justice is requesting unredacted copies of a 2016 report conducted by the Senate Judiciary Committee on those involved in fetal tissue and body parts sales and transfer.

“At this point, the records are intended for investigative use only—we understand that a resolution from the Senate may be required if the department were to use any of the unredacted materials in a formal legal proceeding, such as a grand jury,”  Assistant Attorney General Stephen Boyd wrote.

The 2016 report was sparked by the undercover videos released in 2015 by the Center for Medical Progress. Planned Parenthood and StemExpress employees were featured in the videos.

“We applaud any action by the DOJ to follow the evidence where it leads—and the Senate Judiciary report reveals substantial evidence suggesting Planned Parenthood profits from the sale of baby body parts,” said Lila Rose, the president of Live Action, a pro-life nonprofit organization.

Planned Parenthood, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment, has denied any wrongdoing.

In 2016, “following an investigation into the practice of fetal tissue transfers and the federal laws governing the practice, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley is referring several Planned Parenthood affiliates and companies involved in fetal tissue transfers, as well as the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, to the FBI and the Department of Justice for investigation and possible prosecution,” a press release from Grassley’s office read.

“I don’t take lightly making a criminal referral,” Grassley said in a statement at the time. “But, the seeming disregard for the law by these entities has been fueled by decades of utter failure by the Justice Department to enforce it. And, unless there is a renewed commitment by everyone involved against commercializing the trade in aborted fetal body parts for profit, then the problem is likely to continue.”

“Over two years ago, citizen journalists at The Center for Medical Progress first caught Planned Parenthood’s top abortion doctors in a series of undercover videos callously and flippantly negotiating the sale of tiny baby hearts, lungs, livers, and brains,” the Center for Medical Progress said in a statement, adding:

Since then, two Congressional investigations found even deeper wrongdoing and confirmed that Planned Parenthood Federation of America, several of their biggest affiliates, and multiple business partners broke the law in a profit-driven scheme to commodify dismembered baby body parts.

Planned Parenthood defends the sale of fetal tissue on its website. It is legal to sell fetal tissue, but not to make a profit on it.

“Planned Parenthood affiliates in just two states, representing 1 percent of the organization’s health centers, are involved in fetal tissue research,” its website reads. “They are involved in this work because it can improve public health and because their patients have requested it.”

Rose, Live Action’s president, said taxpayers should not be subsidizing Planned Parenthood’s sale of fetal tissue.

“Taxpayers should not be forced to fund a corporation that commits over 320,000 abortions every year and is now under investigation by the Justice Department and FBI for the sale of baby body parts,” Rose said.

In a statement provided to The Daily Signal, Jeanne Mancini, president of the March for Life, welcomed the news.

“Taxpayer funds should not support an organization under federal investigation for such serious  matters,” Mancini said. “In light of this information Congress needs to follow through on their commitment to defund our nation’s largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood.”

Melanie Israel, a research associate at The Heritage Foundation, told The Daily Signal in an email that Congress should ultimately end funding of Planned Parenthood, which receives approximately $500 million per year, mostly from Medicaid reimbursements, according to CBS News.

“Confirmation that the Department will conduct a ‘thorough and comprehensive assessment’ is welcome news,” Israel said. “Planned Parenthood receives over half a billion taxpayer dollars each year, and Americans deserve to know the truth about disturbing allegations of the sale of fetal body parts.”

*To read this article on The Daily Signal, click here.


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PRESS RELEASE: Heritage Action Applauds GOP Tax Proposal

SEPTEMBER 27, 2017 Washington — Today, Republicans will unveil new details of a sweeping overhaul of America’s tax code. The plan would unleash economic growth, create American jobs, increase wages for American workers, allow families to keep more of their hard-earned money, and make U.S. businesses competitive across the globe. It…

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Conservatives Encouraged by Republican Framework for Tax Reform

By Rachel del Guidice, reporter for The Daily Signal. Any tax reforms passed by Congress should give relief to middle class families and small businesses, bring jobs and capital back to the United States, and make the tax code more fair by ending loopholes and breaks for special interests, congressional…

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A tax cut for all Americans

By Dr. Ed Feulner, founder and president of The Heritage Foundation. When you hear the phrase “corporate tax cut,” what do you picture? Middle-class workers, or Uncle Moneybags, the character from the Monopoly board game? Probably the latter, unfortunately. Too many Americans buy into the popular misconception that such a cut…

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Jimmy Kimmel Knows Comedy, Not What Ails Obamacare, Conservatives Say

By Rachel del Guidice, reporter for The Daily Signal. Jimmy Kimmel may be a funny man, but he doesn’t understand Obamacare, according to a U.S. senator who the late-night TV host slammed this week as dishonest in describing a Republican alternative to the health care law. Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La.,…

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Full Expensing and Meaningful Tax Reform

By Sutton Truluck, Research Assistant, Heritage Action for America. The Trump presidential campaign and congressional Republicans made numerous promises to Americans throughout the 2016 election cycle. Second only to repealing Obamacare, the most recurring promise was to deliver pro-growth tax reform by the end of this year. Unfortunately—now nine months…

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VIDEO: Michael Needham talks Jimmy Kimmel and Senate Health Care Bill

Heritage Action CEO Michael Needham discusses Jimmy Kimmel and the Senate health care bill on Fox & Friends September 21, 2017.…

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Bernie Sanders Introduces Single-Payer Health Care

By Casey Ryan, member of the Young Leaders Program at The Heritage Foundation. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., is pushing a single-payer health care bill that would give Americans health insurance through Medicare. “Today, we begin the long and difficult struggle to end the international embarrassment of the United States being…

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Obama’s ‘Julia’ Will Have Better Life Because of Tax Reform

By the Video Team at The Daily Signal. Julia and her husband, James, are worried about their future. James lost his job and can’t find work. Julia has not received a raise in many years and is unhappy at her job. They are struggling just to make ends meet and…

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The GOP’s Last-Ditch Effort to Partially Repeal Obamacare

By Rachel del Guidice, reporter for The Daily Signal. Republican senators are pitching one last-ditch effort to repeal Obamacare regulations before a Sept. 30 deadline. A bill, drafted by Republican Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, Dean Heller of Nevada, and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, along…

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Why Bernie Sanders’ Single Payer Health Care Plan Is a Total Disaster

By Robert E. Moffit, Senior Fellow in The Heritage Foundation's Center for Health Policy Studies. Americans face a stark choice on what their health care will look like in the future. They can adopt a government-run health-care system, financed by new and heavy federal taxation, with federal officials making all…

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VIDEO: Adam Michel on CNN to Discuss Tax Reform

Adam Michel, Policy Analyst, Thomas A. Roe Institute for Economic Policy Studies at The Heritage Foundation, Appears on CNN's At This Hour with Kate Bolduan to Discuss Tax Reform.…

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Weighing Options on Obamacare

Congress reportedly has until September 30th to use the fiscal year 2017 budget reconciliation tool to repeal and replace Obamacare without Democrat support. With this looming deadline, Congressional Republicans are scrambling to form a healthcare bill that will get 50 senators to “yes”. Last week, Senators Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and…

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Trump’s September Budget Deal Could Move Tax Reform

By Romina Boccia, Deputy Director, Thomas A. Roe Institute at The Heritage Foundation. This week’s budget deal is fiscally irresponsible. But it just may have cleared the legislative schedule for serious action on much-needed tax reform. The lamentable budget deal suspends the debt limit—and continues all discretionary spending at current (FY 2017)…

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Cruz Highlights 7 Ideas for Tax Reform

By Rachel del Guidice, reporter for The Daily Signal. Sen. Ted Cruz thinks tax reform can help the average American. Tax reform is all about “the promise to remodel our antiquated, bureaucratic, ineffective tax system with the objective of creating more jobs, higher wages, more opportunity, with the objective of…

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In Woodrow Wilson Fashion, Here are 14 Points for ObamaCare Repeal

By Tommy Binion, Director, Congressional and Executive Branch Relations at The Heritage Foundation. Woodrow Wilson had his 14 Points. Here are 14 more — this time about one of the most pressing issues in Washington today: ObamaCare repeal. First, Republicans have control of the House, the Senate and the White House.…

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I Went to a ‘Remembering Our Fallen’ Memorial in DC. Here’s What I Saw.

By Jarrett Stepman, editor for The Daily Signal. In the 16 years that have passed since Islamist terrorists attacked this country on 9/11, thousands of Americans have given their lives in the conflicts that followed. On Friday, I had the opportunity to visit a “Remembering Our Fallen” exhibit at the base…

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Why Lisa Murkowski’s Senate Vote Preserving Obamacare Riles Alaska Conservatives

By Rachel del Guidice, reporter for the Daily Signal Some Republicans in Alaska are frustrated that one of their own broke ranks to vote with Senate Democrats against repealing Obamacare. Lisa Murkowski, Alaska’s senior U.S. senator, was one of three Republicans to join forces with Democrats to defeat the Senate bill that…

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Trump Can End Congress’ Illegal Obamacare Exemption with the Stroke of a Pen

By John Malcolm, Vice President for the Institute for Constitutional Government and Michael Cannon, Director of health policy studies at the Cato Institute Congress' ongoing failure to repeal Obamacare means ordinary citizens will continue to suffer that law's rising penalties, wage cuts, reduced choice, rising premiums, eroding coverage, administrative burdens, and collapsing markets. But don't worry, members of…

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Trump Is Right. ‘Our Tax Code Is a Giant, Self-Inflicted Economic Wound.’

By Adam Michel, Policy Analyst, Thomas A. Roe Institute for Economic Policy Studies In his second speech in two weeks on the need for tax reform, President Donald Trump again made a strong case, explaining that “our tax code is a giant, self-inflicted economic wound.” This time speaking in North…

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Governors Urge Greater Flexibility for States in Creating and Implementing Health Care Policy

By Rachel del Guidice, reporter for The Daily Signal. Five governors—representing both parties and from states across the country—told a Senate committee Thursday that inaction on health care is not an option and lawmakers should look to the states for solutions. Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, a Democrat, praised the successes of…

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