Anti-abortion activists who secretly videotaped Planned Parenthood doctors say they are cooperating with a Congressional subpoena for their complete recordings and will deliver the tapes on Wednesday.
In a San Francisco federal district court filing on Friday, attorneys for the anti-abortion Center for Medical Progress told judge William Orrick III that they will “provide material responsive to the subpoena” unless he tells them otherwise.
The veracity of the tapes is at the center of a sprawling high-stakes political fight in Congress. Since June, CMP has released nearly a dozen of the videos, recordings of Planned Parenthood doctors discussing transfers of fetal tissues from abortions to what they were misled into thinking was a biomedical research firm.
Uproar over the tapes has led to a fight in Congress over barring Planned Parenthood from federal funding, an impasse which led to House speaker John Boehner announcing his resignation late last month.
A Planned Parenthood-funded forensic analysis of the recordings in August suggested that CMP’s secret recordings were deceptively edited to remove references to doctors saying they couldn’t profit off transfers of fetal tissues to biomedicine. The head of the House Oversight committee, Jason Chaffetz of Utah, announced at a hearing last week that he had issued a subpoena for the complete tapes from CMP’s David Daleiden, the 26-year-old activist who led and appears in the videos talking with doctors. But so far, lawmakers have not been able to get the videos because of a National Abortion Federation lawsuit against the activists in Orrick’s court. Four Congressional committees, with a fifth on the way, are investigating the Planned Parenthood tapes.
“Still, none of the Committees has asked me to testify,” Daleiden told BuzzFeed News by email. “We are cooperating with the (committee) subpoena,” he added, while maintaining that the abridged recordings that have already been released are, “evidence of Planned Parenthood's corporate countenancing of federal felonies at the highest levels.”
Chaffetz, however, told CNN earlier this week that he did not believe the tapes released already offered evidence of any laws broken by Planned Parenthood. Democrats on his committee and Planned Parenthood officials had called for release of complete video in August, saying they would show officials rejecting any offers of profit on these donations, done at only 4 of Planned Parenthood’s 700 clinics.