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50 U.S. Senators send bipartisan letter to HHS Secretary over investigative videos

Joni Ernst (Photo credit: Joni for Iowa)

Today, Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) and forty-nine other senators sent a letter to Sylvia Burwell, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, in light of two videos showing top Planned Parenthood executives discussing the abortion giant’s fetal parts business.

A press release on Ernst’s website mentions:

In the letter, the senators draw attention to the legal, ethical, and policy issues raised by the footage and call on HHS Secretary Burwell to cooperate with ongoing and future investigations into these questions.

The press release also describes highlights of the letter (with original emphasis).

The full text is available here.

“The footage raises a number of questions about the practices of the organization, including whether they are in compliance with federal laws regulating both the use of fetal tissue and partial-birth abortions,” the senators wrote. “In addition to questions about Planned Parenthood’s compliance with applicable federal law and medical ethics, we believe the footage prompts important policy questions surrounding the issue of abortions permitted so late in a pregnancy – sometimes even later than 5 months – that an unborn baby’s organs can be identified and harvested.”

10 week baby fetus embryoAccording to the admissions of Planned Parenthood top officials, we know that Planned Parenthood has discussed harvesting organs and body parts from babies as young as 10-12 weeks old.

The senators also requested that the Secretary confirm the commencement or immediate initiation of “a thorough internal review of the compliance of the Department and Planned Parenthood – one of the Department’s grantees – with all relevant and applicable federal statutes, regulations, and other requirements.”

In her own statement, Senator Ernst said the “footage is morally reprehensible, vile, and raises a number of questions that taxpayers deserve answers to.”

While the letter is signed by mostly Republicans, it is also signed by Senator Joe Manchin, a Democrat from West Virginia who voted against defunding Planned Parenthood in 2011.

President Obama’s Press Secretary Josh Earnest has already responded that they are taking Planned Parenthood at its word and still regard the organization as “ethical.” This is a sadly unsurprising response from our nation’s most pro-abortion president.

Yet amidst congressional committee investigations, a White House petition demanding the Attorney General investigate Planned Parenthood, and now, this letter, it may be difficult for the president to ignore these abuses for much longer.

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