Dems Demand GOP Apologize to Cecile Richards for 'Witch Hunt' Hearing

Leah Barkoukis
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Posted: Oct 07, 2015 3:00 PM
Dems Demand GOP Apologize to Cecile Richards for 'Witch Hunt' Hearing

In a series of undercover videos, the Center for Medical Progress has exposed Planned Parenthood as more than an abortion giant, but an organization that also harvests fetal body parts. Investigations of the organization, which kicked off immediately at the state and federal levels, brought Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards to Capitol Hill to testify last week, where she was rightfully grilled over the group’s sale of fetal body parts.

Now, however, Democrats are calling foul on the hearing, and demanding that Republicans apologize to Richards, who they claim was “cross-examined and accosted with personal questions and accusations for 4 ½ hours while constantly being interrupted.”

In a letter sent to House Speaker John Boehner, Democratic Reps. Chris Van Hollen, Rosa DeLauro, and Louise Slaughter allege that the hearing was not oversight at all, but rather a “witch hunt against [Richards] personally and an ideological attack on a critical provider of women’s health care.”

“We sincerely believe that the Committee should extend an apology to Ms. Richards and refrain from such ideologically based personal attacks of its witnesses in the future,” the representatives wrote, “particularly because there was no basis to the allegations from the outset.”

The members of Congress also took issue with the chart that was shown during the hearing, which illustrated that Planned Parenthood performs more abortions than cancer screenings and preventative services. 

In the end, the lawmakers contend that, “Planned Parenthood has been the victim of an entrapment scheme conducted over three years in which an opposing political organization actively lied and used deceptive tactics against Planned Parenthood’s employees.”

“Clearly,” they continue, “Planned Parenthood, and its President, was the subject of a hostile hearing in the absence of evidence of any wrongdoing.”

First of all, despite Planned Parenthood and the Democrats’ talking point about how the videos were “deceptively edited,” a new forensics report suggests otherwise. And secondly, when the investigation is concerning something as gruesome as the sale of fetal body parts by an organization that receives half a billion dollars in taxpayer funding, lawmakers have every right to ask tough questions. And if Richards is truly "proud" of her organization's work harvesting fetal body parts, as she says she is, she shouldn't have felt the least bit uncomfortable defending the practice--in the media or on Capitol Hill.