|Rep. Marsha Blackburn.|
A special House committee empaneled to investigate fetal tissue research is preparing to issue 17 subpoenas to medical supply companies and laboratories, seeking the names of researchers, graduate students, laboratory technicians and administrative personnel — and prompting charges of intimidation.
Abortion rights advocates and some university officials say the House investigation into how some of the nation’s most prestigious universities acquire fetal tissue threatens to endanger the lives of scientists, doctors and their staff members. The new subpoenas will only escalate a battle that some researchers fear could shut down studies seeking cures for Parkinson’s disease, the Zika virus and other illnesses.
Representative Marsha Blackburn, Republican of Tennessee, who opposes most fetal tissue research because of its association with abortion, intends to issue the subpoenas on behalf of the Republicans on the House Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives. The panel was created to investigate fetal tissue research after the release of surreptitiously recorded videos purporting to show Planned Parenthood officials trying to profit illegally from the sale of such tissue.
The article goes on to remind us that twenty states have investigated Planned Parenthood over those videos, and all of them have found cleared them of any wrongdoing.
Other states that were urged by conservative lawmakers to launch investigations decided there was not enough evidence to warrant such a response.
And yet Republicans in Congress see no problem with potentially destroying the lives of these lab technicians, students, and doctors, not to mention halting important research that could save thousands of lives, simply because they don't like abortion and the doctored Planned Parenthood videos gave them an excuse to overreact.