The Center for Medical Progress released its latest Planned Parenthood video today. It is around 12 minutes long, and is compiled from several original videos which CMP also released, in full, unedited form, on its YouTube page.
This latest video features a number of Planned Parenthood employees or representatives (the organization’s structure is unclear to me) talking about selling babies’ body parts. The conversation is frequently creepy enough to be surreal, as when someone from PP says that “Everything we provide is fresh.”
A lot of the conversation centers around PP’s reluctance to let its baby parts business become public knowledge. “Big headlines would be a disaster” is one especially direct quote. They also talk about the fact that some affiliates have gotten quite a bit of income from the baby body parts business.
Near its beginning, the video quotes 42 U.S.C. 289g-2, which says, in the part quoted by CMP: “It shall be unlawful for any person to knowingly acquire, receive, or otherwise transfer any human fetal tissue for valuable consideration….” CMP describes Planned Parenthood’s baby body parts business as illegal, and it may well be. But the video does not refer to section (e)(3), which says:
The term “valuable consideration” does not include reasonable payments associated with the transportation, implantation, processing, preservation, quality control, or storage of human fetal tissue.
Most observers have interpreted this to mean that organizations like PP can’t make a profit by selling babies’ body parts, and a court might well give it that interpretation. It is not obvious to me, however, that a “reasonable payment” couldn’t include a markup of some sort. So I don’t think we can say for certain that PP’s baby parts business is illegal per se. Of course, if some of the babies are born alive and then killed, as several of the videos have strongly suggested, the crime of murder has been committed. This clearly warrants a criminal investigation.
Here is the video: