Planned Parenthood is involved in the sale of body parts from aborted fetuses, according to undercover video footage of a conversation with Planned Parenthood's senior director of medical services.
At a business lunch, Dr. Deborah Nucatola tells actors posing as buyers in a video released by The Center for Medical Progress
about the process she goes through to procure body parts for such buyers.
Nucatola is involved in the training of new abortion doctors at Planned Parenthood, and she also performs abortions herself at a Los Angeles-area clinic up until 24 weeks. She has held the position since 2009.
In the video, the buyers ask Nucatola, "How much of a difference can that actually make, if you know kind of what’s expected, or what we need?"
"It makes a huge difference," the Planned Parenthood abortion doctor says. "I’d say a lot of people want liver. And for that reason, most providers will do this case under ultrasound guidance, so they’ll know where they’re putting their forceps."
"The kind of rate-limiting step of the procedure is calvarium. Calvarium — the head — is basically the biggest part," she said.
"We’ve been very good at getting heart, lung, liver, because we know that, so I’m not gonna crush that part, I’m gonna basically crush below, I’m gonna crush above, and I’m gonna see if I can get it all intact," the Planned Parenthood director says in the video.
"And with the calvarium, in general, some people will actually try to change the presentation so that it’s not vertex," she continues. "So if you do it starting from the breech presentation, there’s dilation that happens as the case goes on, and often, the last step, you can evacuate an intact calvarium at the end."
Nucatola's description of the procedure, in which the fetus is taken from the breech position, is commonly known as partial-birth abortion, which is illegal in the United States.
She admits that the legal department at the Planned Parenthood national office is not comfortable with local offices being involved with the sale of fetal body parts because of the potential liability.
"At the national office, we have a Litigation and Law Department which just really doesn’t want us to be the middle people for this issue right now," she says. "But I will tell you that behind closed doors these conversations are happening with the affiliates."
According to The Center for Medical Progress, someone caught selling or purchasing human fetal tissue can face up to 10 years in prison and a fine up to $500,000, under federal law.
At the end of the video, Planned Parenthood President and CEO Cecile Richards is seen praising Nucatola and her work in collecting fetal tissue.
"She's amazing," Richards says.
The Center for Medical Progress says that this is the first video to be released in its "Human Capital" series, part of an almost three-year investigation into the illegal selling of aborted fetal parts by Planned Parenthood.
"Planned Parenthood’s criminal conspiracy to make money off of aborted baby parts reaches to the very highest levels of their organization," said David Daleiden, project lead at the center.
"Elected officials must listen to the public outcry for Planned Parenthood to be held accountable to the law and for our tax dollars to stop underwriting this barbaric abortion business," he said.
Watch the video here.
On Tuesday, Planned Parenthood officials said the video had been heavily edited and recorded by a group that was established to damage its reputation. It said in a statement the video "falsely portrays Planned Parenthood's participation in tissue donation programs that support lifesaving scientific research."
Reaction to the video from some Republican presidential contenders was swift. One of them, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, called for an investigation of Planned Parenthood.
Another, former Texas Governor Rick Perry, called the video "a disturbing reminder" of what he characterized as "the organization’s penchant for profiting off the tragedy of a destroyed human life."
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