By Ben Kamisar
GOP to launch select panel to probe Planned Parenthood videos
House Republicans will launch a select committee to investigate the controversial Planned Parenthood videos, Rep. Marsha BlackburnMarsha BlackburnThe Hill's 12:30 Report Rankings: Trump’s top 10 VP picks Lewandowski: List of Trump VP candidates 'very small' MORE (R-Tenn.) said.
“To get answers for the American people, we are significantly ramping up our oversight and investigative practices,” Blackburn said in the weekly Republican address.
“We will move to establish a new select subcommittee that will focus its full attention, resources and subpoena power on getting to the bottom of these horrific practices.”
Blackburn laid out the party’s three-pronged strategy towards limiting abortion rights after the release of controversial videos that showed Planned Parenthood executives being surreptitiously recorded.
The plan includes the new subcommittee, “additional pro-life measures” to be passed through Congress, and a new push to use the reconciliation process to “break the Senate logjam” and ensure an up-or-down vote that will likely pass the Republican Senate.
“I know this is difficult to talk about, and it should be. But on these videos, they haggle over prices, they casually sift through body parts,” she said.
“These are some of the most abhorrent, inhumane things imaginable, and they do it all as if it is just routine — an expected part of doing business.”
Blackburn emphasized Pope Francis’ call to Congress to “protect and defend human life at every stage of development” as justification for the push.
Republicans and Democrats have sparred over whether government funding measures should include funding for Planned Parenthood, with some members of the GOP caucus pushing for a government shutdown unless the organization is defunded.