In Planned Parenthood's first congressional appearance since the release of undercover videos, the abortion provider's president is defending its provision of foetal tissue for researchers and castigating Republicans for not investigating the anti-abortion activists who furtively made the recordings.
In testimony prepared for a hearing, Cecile Richards said the organisation's donation of tissue from aborted foetuses is a "minuscule" part of its work proving health services for women. She said the group has nearly 700 clinics but obtains foetal tissue in less than 1 percent of them.
Group denies breaking any laws
Nonetheless, she said such research has helped scientists search for cures and said, "Planned Parenthood is proud of its limited role in supporting foetal tissue research."
Read: Planned Parenthood says no profit from foetal organs, via News24
Abortion opponent David Daleiden obtained the videos by posing as an executive of a fake company seeking to supply foetal tissue to researchers.
Richards said Daleiden, despite three years of doing that, didn't entrap any Planned Parenthood officials into doing anything illegal.
"It is clear they acted fraudulently and unethically and perhaps illegally," Richards said. "Yet it is Planned Parenthood, not Mr Daleiden, that is currently subject to four congressional investigations" by the Republican-run Congress.
The testimony was provided by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, where Richards was set to appear. Her prepared remarks contained little her organisation has not already said since the abortion foes began releasing the videos in July.
Conservatives and some Republicans say Planned Parenthood has broken federal laws forbidding sales of foetal tissue for profit. The group has denied breaking any laws.
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