WASHINGTON PUNDIT — In an undercover video, a former technician for a tissue-harvesting company details how an aborted baby was kept alive so that its heart could be harvested at a California Planned Parenthood facility, raising more legal questions about the group’s practices.
Holly O’Donnell, a former blood and tissue procurement technician for the biotech startup StemExpress, also said she was asked to harvest an intact brain from the late-term, male fetus whose heart was still beating after the abortion.
A StemExpress supervisor “gave me the scissors and told me that I had to cut down the middle of the face. And I can’t even describe what that feels like,” said Ms. O’Donnell, who has been featured in earlier videos by the Center for Medical Progress, a pro-life group that previously had released six undercover clips involving Planned Parenthood personnel and practices.
David Daleiden, the video project leader, said the undercover footage and interviews show that fetuses are sometimes delivered “intact and alive” before their organs are harvested.
The federal Born-Alive Infants Protection Act of 2002 says that when a child is born alive, including having a beating heart, he or she is a legal person and has a right to lifesaving medical care.
California law also prohibits any kind of experimentation on a fetus with a discernible heartbeat, said the Center for Medical Progress, which is calling for the federal government to cease its $500 million a year support to Planned Parenthood and for it to be investigated.
“Today’s video is especially gruesome, and it shows, once again, the barbarity of what takes place at Planned Parenthoodclinics across the country,” said Rep. Joseph R. Pitts, Pennsylvania Republican and chairman of the House Energy and Commerce subcommittee on health, one of several congressional panels investigating Planned Parenthood.
Rep. Jason Chaffetz, Utah Republican and chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said Wednesday that all the videos are “disturbing,” and his committee’s investigation will look into whether “any federal funding supported transactions involving fetal tissue.”
“Top-level employees of Planned Parenthood admit to changing their procedures to harvest intact bodies of unborn children for body-part trafficking,” said Rep. Trent Franks, Arizona Republican and chairman of the House Judiciary subcommittee on the Constitution and civil justice.
Mr. Franks and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte, Virginia Republican, also said Wednesday that they have written to 58 Planned Parenthood affiliates. They are seeking 10 years of data about all abortions, late-term abortions, “born-alive” infants, fetal tissue collections and any modifications of abortion techniques to “increase the odds of preserving intact fetal tissue and organs.”