Planned Parenthood announces it will release documents
COLUMBIA — Senate Pro Tem Ron Richard, R-Joplin, announced Friday Planned Parenthood will produce documents through its lawyer in response to the senate subpoena Richard issued on behalf of Sen. Kurt Schaefer, R-Columbia, last November.
“In exchange for their compliance, we will suspend contempt proceedings at this time,” Richard said. “By Planned Parenthood fulfilling the request to produce documents, the Senate can continue its investigation to find out what happens to fetal tissue in Missouri.”
Last fall, Mary Kogut of Planned Parenthood and Dr. James Miller of Pathology Services, Inc. declined to testify and produce documents requested by the sanctity of Life Senate Interim Committee.
Richard signed subpoenas and issued them to Kogut and Miller. Last week the Senate adopted resolutions recognizing that Kogut and Miller both declined to comply with official Senate requests. Both are also required to appear before the Senate Committee Monday.
The subpoena was initially issued to exercise the Senate’s ability to gather outside information into the Planned Parenthood investigation. A Senate committee started its investigation into the organization after undercover videos were released last summer alleging the organization was illegally selling fetal tissue for profit. Planned Parenthood denied the accusations and the Missouri attorney general cleared the organization of wrongdoing.
"I am pleased that Planned Parenthood has finally agreed to cooperate with our investigation and that Missourians may soon actually know what happens to aborted babies,” Schaefer said. “But I am disappointed that Dr. Miller has refused to cooperate, as he could have aided in answering vital questions.”
Courtney Allen Curtis, R-St. Louis County, said that it was a long process and that the Senate will see what he thinks is the bigger issue.
"The Senate will finally get to see that they wasted taxpayers time and money," Curtis said.
KOMU 8 reached out to Planned Parenthood but it had no comment.