Activists Who Investigate Planned Parenthood Are Doing What Law Enforcement Has Failed to Do, Congressman Says

February 10, 2011 - 9:47 PM

chris smith

Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.) is a long time human rights activist who claims abortion violates the human rights of the unborn. He spoke on Feb. 10 at the press conference, praising Live Action's work and criticizing law enforcement for not investigating claims of misconduct by Planned Parenthood staff at abortion clinics across the nation. (CNSNews.com/Penny Starr)

(CNSNews.com) – Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.) said the undercover videos released in recent days by the pro-life advocacy group Live Action are doing the job that law enforcement should be doing to investigate Planned Parenthood abortion clinics.

“The way that law enforcement often apprehends criminals is through sting operations,” Smith said at a Thursday press conference on Capitol Hill about defunding Planned Parenthood.

“What Lila Rose and Live Action has done is a sting operation, and that’s why I would reiterate this: It’s an engraved invitation for law enforcement to cease its looking askance at [Planned Parenthood’s] exploitation of young girls and to begin investigating these abortion clinics run by Planned Parenthood and others," said Smith.

Over the past three years, Live Action has produced videos and has conducted other undercover operations in Planned Parenthood abortion clinics.

Those investigations were done at Planned Parenthood clinics in 11 states.

Live Action’s latest investigation focused on staff at Planned Parenthood abortion clinics in New Jersey, New York, Virginia and the District of Columbia, where staff allegedly cooperated with actors posing as pimps seeking treatment, including abortions, for their underage sex workers.

Over the past week, Live Action has released six videos from all seven clinics the actors visited in those states.

Smith, who is chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health and Global Human Rights, said he has written legislation to combat human and sex trafficking in the United States.

lila rose

Lila Rose, president of Live Action, joined lawmakers and pro-life advocates to talk at a press conference on Feb. 10 about halting federal funding to Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion provider. (CNSNews.com/Penny Starr)

Smith suggested that reporters can launch their own investigations on Planned Parenthood’s abortion operations, but law enforcement should start doing its job now.

“The time is long past due for them to be doing their own sting operations the way Lila Rose and Live Action has done so bravely,” Smith said.

Members of the Pro-Life Women’s Caucus at the conference included Reps. Jean Schmidt, chairwoman, Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.), Vicky Hartzler (R-Mont.), Renee Ellmers (R-N.C.) and Ann Marie Buerkle (R-N.Y.)

Pro-life advocacy groups that called for defunding Planned Parenthood at the conference included Students for Life for America, Concerned Women of America, Americans United for Life Action, and the Susan B. Anthony List, which partnered with Live Action to launch the Web site www.exposeplannedparenthood.com.

“Based on what we have seen in these videos, Planned Parenthood clinics are not safe for women,” Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of SBA List, said.  “By defunding the organization of the hundreds of millions of tax dollars it receives each year, Americans will no longer be participating in its egregious activities.”

The latest Planned Parenthood annual report disclosed that the organization received more than $363 million in government grants and contracts, including funds from the federal Title X Family Planning, for Fiscal Year 2008-2009.  In 2008, Planned Parenthood reported performing 324,008 abortions.