Following the release of two secretly recorded videos that appear to feature the discussion of the price of fetal tissue involving a Planned Parenthood employee, the organization’s president today said it has done nothing illegal and criticized those responsible for the videos.
“Planned Parenthood has broken no laws," Cecile Richards, the president of the non-profit, said on "This Week." "We have the highest standards. The care and health care and safety of our patients is our most important priority."
The anti-abortion group Center for Medical Progress released two videos showing Planned Parenthood's senior director of medical services Dr. Deborah Nucatola discussing procedures for providing fetal tissue to researchers, including possibly changing some aspects of the abortion process to preserve tissue samples. It is illegal to use a different method of abortion in order to facilitate tissue donation.
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A second video released this week seems to show a different Planned Parenthood official, Mary Gatter, discussing price ranges of tissue samples. While the sale of fetal tissue for profit is illegal, abortion providers can legally be reimbursed for the costs of processing and transporting the samples.
“The folks behind this, in fact, are part of the most militant wing of the anti-abortion movement that has been behind, you know, the bombing of clinics, the murder of doctors in their homes, and in their -- in their churches,” she said. "That's what actually needs to be -- to be looked at."
In response to the claims of illegal behavior in the video, Planned Parenthood asserted that all of its actions are legal as well as ethical. In addition, the organization said the video was “heavily edited,” stating that “similar false accusations have been put forth by opponents of abortion services for decades.”