One day after the nation learned that babies were born alive with hearts beating, then sliced up to retrieve brains and body parts, House Democrats have launched an investigation – into The Center for Medical Progress, not into the allegations of infanticide.
In a four-page letter today, Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), ranking Democrat on the House Oversight Committee, asked CMP for a list of information, including copies of all its video and audiotapes.
Cummings insists that, “Any legitimate and balanced congressional investigation must also address your group’s role in these activities.” He adds that if there are hearings on this issue, then they will need this information. Cummings’ letter says that the videos “implicate Center for Medical Progress and its affiliates in potentially unlawful activities” by secretly recording Planned Parenthood.
Cummings’ writes that the committee wants copies of all the video and audio recordings CMP produced between 2010 and now, which involved Planned Parenthood. The letter asks for tax documents, funding sources, a list of the highest donors, including their identities, and all their filings as an organization, among other things.
The Democratic investigation comes on the heels of the Republican investigation by the same committee; hence, Cummings’ plays the “we have to be fair” card to justify investigating CMP.
At issue in most of the investigations launched by abortion advocates in state and national leadership are the questions of “fake identity” and “secret recordings.” Both of these are mentioned in the current letter. But despite Cummings saying it “appears” CMP has broken laws, that doesn’t make it reality.
CMP and its leader David Daleiden, have repeatedly said in statements:
The Center for Medical Progress follows all applicable laws in the course of our investigative journalism work. The National Abortion Federation is a criminal organization that has spent years conspiring with Planned Parenthood on how to violate federal laws on partial-birth abortion and fetal tissue sales. The Center for Medical Progress will contest any attempts to suppress our First Amendment rights to free speech or silence the freedom of the citizen press.
Daleiden has made comments about the recording situations of the videos. For example, videos in California were taped in public places because in that state, both parties must consent to a recording–unless it is in a public place where there is reasonable expectation someone could overhear the conversation, such as in a restaurant. Texas and Colorado are “one-party” consent states where if the recorder consents, the party being recorded doesn’t have to. As far as the “fake IDs,” Daleiden said in a previous interview:
People don’t realize that it’s a common law liberty in the United States to change your name at will. I think it’s a little silly to say that it’s unethical when it is a common law liberty to present yourself however you want to present yourself. . . .
In fact, name changes are legal, and so are non-profit organizations. The allegations are that CMP’s non-profit, BioMax, was not really a “biomedicine and engineering charitable organization,” but few would argue it was absolutely related to this area.
In short, there is no substantial evidence at this point that CMP has broken any laws. Likewise, even if there were, it would not invalidate the horrendous truth of CMP’s discoveries which implicate a conspiracy to destroy life, and even to commit infanticide, to sell a baby’s body parts to the highest bidder.
House Democrats can waste taxpayer money by focusing on someone with a video camera, or they can look on the other end of the camera to see the remains of dead children who have been harvested for parts.
It’s likely that voters will remember the latter.