Analysis

5 states defund and 13 states investigate Planned Parenthood

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Since the release of the first incriminating Planned Parenthood video from the Center for Medical Progress, a flurry of investigations have ensued. These videos at least show evidence indicating a strong likelihood of illegal activity, and at worst show despicable, callous disregard for the law, human life, and women. Here are the ongoing official investigations and government actions taken against Planned Parenthood.

As of Wednesday, five states have made moves to defund Planned Parenthood, or end participation in the funneling of federal money to the unscrupulous organization. These states are New Hampshire, Utah, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Alabama. Thirteen states have launched investigations into Planned Parenthood, including Florida; this investigation caught Planned Parenthood illegally performing second trimester abortions. South Carolina also announced a probe into state abortion facilities.

As states continue to launch investigations and take appropriate action, the federal government remains largely divided on the issue. A Senate effort to defund Planned Parenthood was blocked earlier this month, although a majority of senators voted in favor of ending forced taxpayer funding. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, a federal agency, has threatened several states that their “plans to terminate Medicaid provider agreements with Planned Parenthood may illegally restrict beneficiary access to services.”

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On the other hand, a handful of congressional committees have announced probes into the abortion corporation. The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform has begun to investigate whether the Obama administration provided any federal grants to Planned Parenthood that were ultimately used in relation to the illegal sale of aborted baby body parts. The Department of Justice has also committed to review the videos and investigate. Meanwhile, in a predictable display of indifference, the White House seems unwilling to even watch the videos.

The issue will likely come to intense conflict in Congress this fall, as lawmakers attempt to move forward with plans for the new fiscal year, which begins October 1st. Regardless of how state and federal bickering and political jockeying play out, attention is being called to the unethical and illegal practices of Planned Parenthood, and the American people are watching.

Attempts to discredit the Center for Medical Progress lack the coherence and facts needed to convince honest and open-minded citizens that a full and unbiased investigation into Planned Parenthood is not needed. Some writers have even tried to draw attention to the “illegal” nature of states’ actions to defund Planned Parenthood – a laughably silly notion, considering the grave nature of the truly illegal and disturbing actions taken by Planned Parenthood, which led to the states’ decision to defund. Needless to say, that tactic is called a smokescreen – and it rarely works.

In the words of California attorney Kristi Burton Brown,

“With such a situation, rife with illegalities, continuing to brew, it is little wonder that a number of states are choosing to defund Planned Parenthood or distance themselves from the abortion giant in other legal ways. If Planned Parenthood affiliates want to stand together – despite laws being broken, women being harmed, and babies being killed and sold for profit – they will likely fall together, under the law, as well.”

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