Senators Isakson, Perdue Condemn Disturbing Planned Parenthood Videos, Call for Investigation

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Johnny Isakson (R-GA) and David Perdue (R-GA) today signed a letter along with 48 other senators to the Obama administration following the release of video footage by the Center for Medical Progress depicting senior Planned Parenthood Federation of America executives discussing in gruesome detail the organization’s role in the harvesting of the organs of unborn babies. 

Senators Isakson and Perdue also applauded the steps being taken in Georgia to review Planned Parenthood’s practices in the state. 

In the letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell, the Senators draw attention to the legal, ethical, and policy issues raised by the footage and call on Burwell to cooperate with ongoing and future investigations into these questions. Planned Parenthood is a recipient of federal grant money.

“The footage raises a number of questions about the practices of the organization, including whether they are in compliance with federal laws regulating both the use of fetal tissue and partial-birth abortions,” the Senators wrote. “In addition to questions about Planned Parenthood’s compliance with applicable federal law and medical ethics, we believe the footage prompts important policy questions surrounding the issue of abortions permitted so late in a pregnancy – sometimes even later than five months – that an unborn baby’s organs can be identified and harvested.”  

Senators Isakson and Perdue also requested that the Secretary confirm that she will undertake “a thorough internal review of the compliance of the Department and Planned Parenthood – one of the Department’s grantees – with all relevant and applicable federal statutes, regulations, and other requirements.”

“The government should not be in the practice of funding Planned Parenthood or any abortions in the first place, and in 2012, I voted to end all taxpayer funding to this organization,” said Senator Isakson. “This video is incredibly disturbing and I applaud the steps taken by the state of Georgia to ensure this abhorrent practice is not occurring in our state.”

“These videos of senior Planned Parenthood officials are incredibly disturbing and Planned Parenthood, or anyone involved in such reprehensible behavior, should be held accountable,” said Senator Perdue. “I expect the Department of Health and Human Services and Planned Parenthood to fully cooperate with all ensuing investigations, including Georgia’s joint review of clinics in our state. I am proudly pro-life and will continue to support legislation, like the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, that protects unborn babies and preserves life.”

On July 16, 2015, Georgia Governor Nathan Deal ordered a review of the practices of Planned Parenthood’s five clinics in the state by both the Department of Community Health and the Department of Public Health. Georgia Attorney General Sam Olens has announced his office stands ready to assist in the probe, as well as with any necessary legal steps that may need to be taken. Senators Isakson and Perdue joined calls for a comprehensive congressional investigation. 

Full text of the Senators’ letter, which was led by Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, can be found here.