Democrats on the U.S. House Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives walked out of a committee meeting rather than be present to vote on a congressional contempt citation for a company caught up in the undercover video investigation of Planned Parenthood’s baby body parts trade.
“Let me have the record reflect the Democrats are refusing to participate in this illegitimate and unsanctioned effort to seek criminal contempt (charges),” said Rep. Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill..
“We refuse to sanction or endorse this exercise by continuing to participate,” she said.
The stunt, however, had no impact on the outcome, and the committee, after Chairwoman Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., said, “The lady’s actions are noted,” continued with its vote, approving a report recommending StemExpress, an organ procurement company, and CEO Cate Dyer, be held in contempt of Congress.
They have failed to comply with “lawfully issued subpoenas,” the committee determined.
See Schakowsky’s statement:
StemExpress came under investigation by the House panel due to its financial and professional links to Planned Parenthood, whose executives were caught in the undercover videos discussing the selling of the body parts of aborted babies.
Liberty Counsel, which is working with one of the undercover investigators noted evidence released in the investigation by the Center for Medical Progress last year “indicated that Planned Parenthood illegally profited financially from the sale of aborted baby remains to StemExpress and other organ procurement organizations.”
The House Resolution Report, Liberty Counsel said, details a pattern of deception and stonewalling employed by StemExpress that was used to stall an investigation by the House Panel.”
Planned Parenthood and StemExpress “profit from aborted babies,” said Mat Staver, chairman of Liberty Counsel.
“It is human genocide. Period. This barbaric practice must be exposed. Planned Parenthood and StemExpress want to keep the public in the dark. They want to conceal their barbaric practices. They need to be held accountable,” Staver said.
Operation Rescue, whose president, Troy Newman, was on the board of the Center for Medical Progress, cited the “parliamentary antics” the pro-abortion Democrats staged just before they walked out.
The recommendation then was approved on an 8-0 vote.
OR said: “At issue are accounting records that were first voluntarily requested by the Select Panel from StemExpress. Instead of accounting documents, the Select Panel was provided inadequate summaries. When Dyer and her company refused to comply, the Select Panel issued subpoenas to require compliance.
StemExpress told the congressional panel to seek the financial records from its outside accountant, the Scinto Group, OR said. “However, when the Panel approached the Scinto Group, it refused to comply because Stem Express objected to their compliance.”
OR said the panel was “also told to seek accounting documents from a former accountant, Sara Lee Heuston, who happened to be represented by StemExpress’ attorney.”
“During a conversation with Heuston, she told the Select Panel she had no documents ‘and that if the panel contacted her again she would call the police,'” the pro-life organization said.
OR said Dyer refused to supply the congressional panel with the names of current accountants for her company.
“This is the very definition of the ‘run-around,'” said Newman. “Dyer has a lot to hide, so to keep the Select Panel [from] accessing incriminating documents that may implicate her and her Planned Parenthood cohorts, she would rather face contempt charges.”
Congress has been trying for eight months to obtain the records it needs.
The contempt resolution now goes to the full Committee on Energy and Commerce. If it is approved, it will be referred to the speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, for certification. Contempt is a Class A misdemeanor that carries a maximum penalty of $100,000.
The videos reveal Planned Parenthood abortionists adjusting their procedures to accommodate body part purchasers’ requests and making money off the deals. Both are illegal under federal law.
In May, WND reported Blackburn said in a letter to the company: “The Select Investigative Panel was forced to issue a subpoena on February 12, 2016, which required the production in an unredacted form of 12 items. Despite that explicit legal instruction, StemExpress’ production was replete with [redactions]. Your firm flatly refused to produce one item, and produced an attorney-created accounting report, rather than required accounting documents.”
The panel was assigned by Congress to investigate the evidence from the undercover videos.
The case focuses on the videos released throughout 2015 by the Center for Medical Progress. Since then, the abortion industry has retaliated, bringing lawsuits and charges against the investigators, David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt.
The congressional panel previously released documents confirming that the abortion industry profits from the sale of body parts.
One of the videos features Dyer admitting Planned Parenthood sells fully intact aborted babies.
“We have made numerous attempts to acquire business and accounting documents from StemExpress that are necessary to complete our work,” Blackburn told the company. “All of these requests have been met with verbal and written objections from your attorneys.”
Blackburn said the evidence already available suggests that “in order to get to the bottom of StemExpress involvement in the fetal tissue industry it would require” banking records, a forensic accounting review and a complete production of unredacted business records.
“We have yet to receive accounting, banking and other business documents, for which subpoenas were issued to StemExpress,” Blackburn wrote, “Instead, we have received attorney created estimates and summaries without back up materials. These summaries provide insufficient information to complete the panel’s review of the fetal tissue industry and they ignore the advice of the experts who testified.”
Further, she said StemExpress’ “objections” were of no account.
“I find all of StemExpress’ objections to the subpoena to be invalid and without legal merit.”
Blackburn explained the financial statements are needed to document whether there was a profit from the sale of the body parts of unborn infants.
The subpoenas from Congress were ignored, she said.
“You outright refused to fully comply with the subpoena issued to you personally,” Blackburn told Dyer.
A short time after the videos were released, StemExpress announced it was disassociating from Planned Parenthood.
But the entire issue remains under investigation in Blackburn’s panel and in others.
Revelations from the House Select Panel generated further negative publicity for Planned Parenthood.
“This barbarism degrades our nation and violates federal laws against such profiteering. We commend the Select Panel for its investigative work thus far and call on the Department of Justice to take immediate action,” Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of Susan B. Anthony List, said earlier.
“The abortion industry sells baby hearts, livers, brains, hands and other organs procured by a middleman company inside their facilities at no cost or effort to the facilities themselves,” she continued. “The facility receives upfront fees that can amount to five-figure sums every month and then the procurement companies resell organs for tens of thousands more – depending on the child’s characteristics.
“Was the developing baby 18 weeks old? 24 weeks? Was the mother a smoker? What is the child’s ethnicity? All of these factors might make the heart, foot, eyeball or limbs more expensive,” she said in a statement.
The SBA List linked to documents posted online by the U.S. House, including copies of promotional materials promising that the baby body trade is “financially profitable.”
“Join the [blanked out] partner program that fiscally rewards clinics for contributing to the advancement of life-saving research with a solution that is easy to incorporate into your clinic practice,” the organization said.
The marketing materials promise the promotion of biomedical research while “also providing a financial benefit to your clinic.”
In the first undercover video released by CMP, Deborah Nucatola of Planned Parenthood commented on crushing babies.
“We’ve been very good at getting heart, lung, liver, because we know that, so I’m not gonna crush that part, I’m gonna basically crush below, I’m gonna crush above, and I’m gonna see if I can get it all intact,” she said.
See the first video:
In the second video, Planned Parenthood’s Mary Gatter discussed how her compensation for organs could rise when she said, “I want a Lamborghini.”
See her comments:
The fifth video released shows Melissa Farrell of Planned Parenthood’s Houston clinic discussing “intact fetal cadavers”:
The seventh video has the testimony of a Planned Parenthood worker who tapped an aborted infant’s heart and saw it start beating.