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Blackburn: Fetal body parts “profit motive structure” harms women and babies

Photo by Republican Party of Shelby County

In an interview with The Daily Signal broadcasted on Facebook Live, Rep. Marsha Blackburn shared an update on the progress of the Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives.

A few minutes into the interview, Blackburn explained that the panel is seeking bank records from fetal procurement agencies in order to determine whether they are making a profit from the sale of aborted fetal body parts. An invoice has already been uncovered demonstrating that an organization charged tax on the sale of three fetal brains. Blackburn noted:

If you’re charging tax, that would lead you to believe that it’s not like our organ donation programs… that this is something that has moved into a profit motive structure, and we’re very concerned about what that does to women and babies.

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Blackburn went on to explain that under the “profit motive structure,” both the pregnant woman and the preborn baby become a “profit center” for abortion facilities as well as tissue procurement organizations. She claimed that both Democrats and Republicans have agreed that obtaining financial records from abortion clinics and procurement organizations is the way to determine if profits are being made, but that due to the refusal of some agencies to comply, nearly three dozen subpoenas have been issued. “We have from now to the end of the year to fulfill our charge with this committee,” said Blackburn, “and it is important that we do this right and get the information.”

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Blackburn responded to the idea that the committee was simply going after Planned Parenthood, saying, “We’re looking at the abortion industry at whole. We have not issued any subpoenas to Planned Parenthood. We are looking at the medical practices of the abortion industry and the business practices of the procurement industry.” However, she noted, “Planned Parenthood is an abortion service provider in this country. They do about 30 percent of all the abortions.”

To the claim that some say the Select Investigative Panel’s investigations could hinder medical research, Blackburn replied:

We all believe in medical research and support medical research. The point of this is, do you need fresh fetal tissue? And other than a few early vaccines, fresh fetal tissue really is not used very much.

The Zika virus research that has been done was with pluripotent adult stem cells, you have cord blood, there is lot of work that is done from that… so fresh fetal tissue is not used a lot, and we have heard from many scientists and many researchers that say it’s really not used very often and no one should be making a profit off of this.

Blackburn noted that current laws relevant to the investigation were put in place by Democrats. “We’re saying abide by the law, and you cannot profit from the sale of body parts in this country.” When asked what viewers could expect next from the investigation, Blackburn stated that the panel will continue to obtain relevant documents and find answers, and will report to Congress at the end of the year.

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