Kinder asks for Planned Parenthood hearings after undercover video
JEFFERSON CITY - Lieutenant Governor Peter Kinder responded Thursday to a video posted to Youtube, showing a Planned Parenthood executive discussing the transport and conveying of fetal body parts to medical clinics.
Kinder called on Missouri Speaker Todd Richardson and Senate Pro Tem Tom Dempsey to conduct hearings regarding the video.
The video, which The Center for Medical Progress (CMP) says was recorded in July 2014, shows Planned Parenthood Senior Director of Medical Services, Dr. Deborah Nucatola, meeting with people posing as representatives of a "fetal tissue procurement company". It is a heavily-edited eight minute version of a nearly three-hour raw video.
Kinder said, "We in Missouri have been a pro-life state for many years, and we must hold hearings on this to determine what exactly is going on at Planned Parenthood. We cannot stand idly by in the face of such a callous and ghoulish revelation. Any organization participating in, profiting from or sponsoring the harvesting of body parts from aborted babies must be held accountable."
Kinder has long been an opponent of abortion, and in 1997, led an effort to ban partial-birth abortion, according to his office.
CMP claims the video shows Nucatola discussing the sale of fetal body parts to research clinics. Planned Parenthood denied that Wednesday, saying the doctor never discussed sale of tissue or organs, but rather costs to cover transport and storage.
According to the U.S. code, fetal tissue donations to research facilities are legal, as long as the woman providing the tissue gives consent for the donation. If the fetal tissue is provided after an abortion, the woman must give consent for the abortion before giving consent for the donation.
Additionally, the law says donations are legal as long as, "No alteration of the timing, method, or procedures used to terminate the pregnancy was made solely for the purposes of obtaining the tissue."
At about the 3:35 point in the edited video, Nucatola says, "You're just kind of cognisant of where you put your graspers, you try to intentionally go above and below the Thorax, so that, you know; We've been very good at getting heart, lung, liver, because we know that, so I'm not going to crush that part. I'm gonna, basically, crush below, I'm gonna crush above, and I'm gonna see if I can get it all intact."
In a statement Wednesday, Planned Parenthood for America (PPFA) said CMP's claims were "flat-out untrue," but the organization didn't specify which claims it was referring to.
In the video, Nucatola discusses prices with the actors, costs Planned Parenthood calls "Standard reimbursement fees for costs associated with tissue donation programs."
Eric Ferrero, Vice President of Communications for PPFA, said, "Our medical practices and guidelines in this area are clear, and we do this important work just like other high-quality health care providers -- with full, appropriate consent from patients, under the highest ethical and legal standards, and with no financial benefit for the patient or Planned Parenthood."
Planned Parenthood also claims the edited 8-minute video twists and distorts what is said in the full 2 hour and forty two minute raw video.
The Center for Medical Progress Project Lead David Daleiden has a history of criticism for his past work with groups discredited for faulty reporting on abortion issues.