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tv   Politics and Public Policy Today  CSPAN  October 8, 2015 4:00pm-6:01pm EDT

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women. >> i'm just about through. is there adequate capacity in the health care system to absorb all of planned parenthood's patients. >> no, there is clearly no capacity to absorb those pati t patients. those patients would --. jeksual disease testing and as a result there would be more abortions in this country, not fewer. >> thank you. and, finally, what types of patients might be particularly harmed if those were -- that want to defund planned parenthood were successful in their effort? >> mr. conyers, poor women, low income women in this country living in rural areas would be ones who would suffer most from not having access to the critical services that planned
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parenthood provides. >> i thank you for your testimony and i thank the chairman for their time. >> there are six minutes remaining in this vote, so the committee will stand in recess and reconvene immediately after the votes.
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the house judiciary committee is taking a break now. the committee looking at the operations of planned parenthood today. and as the hearing today chairman bob goodlatte and congressman john conyers paid tribute to congressman edwards who n california who has died. while recess is in place, we'll show their opening statements. they include, of course, comments about planned parenthood. good afternoon. we welcome everyone to this
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morning's hearing on planned parenthood exposed, examining abortion procedures and medical iktings at the nation's largest abortion provider. and i'll begin with my openings statement. before i go to the statement on that i'd like to take a moment to remember the life of former congressman william donelan don edwards who passed away this month at the age of 100. don edwards was first elected to congress in 1963 where he had a discontintinguishes career work the voting rights act, civil rights act and served on the housing committee during the investigation of the watt e gait scandal. during this time on the judiciary committee he served with former congressman caldwell butler who i worked for at the time. when don edwards left office in 1995 after 32 years of congressional service, he was succeeded by our vary own zoloft
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gren in california's 16th district. i had the opportunity to serve with congressman edwards miefs for two years and appreciate his service. and i now turn it to congressman conyers to share about our former colleague. >> thank you, mr. chairman. members of congress and the committee and all those here in the hearing room i knew congressman don edwards and worked with him, and he has left a lasting legacy. he was a progressive principled man who never stopped believing that the coercive power of the government should be subject to the highest levels of scrutiny, and i think we still carry on that tradition in judiciary even now. and he also wanted us never to
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forget that our government exists through the consent of the governed with the purpose of preserving and not eroding our rights. i'm grateful to have been a friend and a colleague of him -- of his during his service and career in congress, and we will miss him and remember him. and i thank the chair. >> mr. chairman? >> the gentlewoman from california is recognized. >> thank you. i would brieferly like to join in the eulogy of congressman don edwards. in 1970 i graduated from stanford university and came out to washington without a job and don edwards hired me, and i worked for him for nine years both here in washington and also in the california office. we went through incredible
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impeevement of richard nixon along with your prior boss and many other issues. he was a marvelous man, a mentor to me, and someone who was widely admired not only in the congress but in the district that he served. i was honored to be able to succeed him in the house of representatives and kept in frequent touch with him. he watched all of us in his retimer and he lived to the ripe old age of 100 years, so he had great satisfaction in his life. he made his mark, and i would just like members to know that we will be having a special order about congressman don edwards on the 21st of october and members are invited to participate. like mr. conyers i never got to serve on with him but on the staff i was certainly a huge
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admirer and i thank the chairman for allowing me these few words. >> the gentleman from new york. >> thank you. i had the honor of serving with him for two years. i was elected in 19 992, and i knew of him well before i came to congress. i knew of him as one of the leading defenders of legal liberties in the united states and greatly admired him from afar. when i came to congress and i was told -- or asked where i wanted to serve. i said the judiciary committee. he said if i wanted to to that i had to get mr. edwards' approval so i had an interview with him because i must have satisfied his interest in my attitude toward civil liberties because he approved it and i became a member of this committee but such was the esteem and he was held by this leadership that he
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was given apparently that prerogative with new members and he richly deserved it. he was a leading voice of civil liberties for many, many years and he served this country well and we should thank his memory for that. i yield back. >> chair thanks the gentlemen. and now i'll begin my opening statement. and we have votes on the floor, but perhaps i and the ranking member can get our statements in before we go to vote. a child's heart begins to form three weeks after conception. by the fifth week her heart begins to beat, pumping blood throughout her little body and her arm and leg buds begin to grow. her brain begins to develop. her eyes and ears begin to form. by the sixth week her hands and feet begin to form. the following week her toes can be seen. during that time she kicks and will jump if startled. by eight weeks the baby's facial
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features become more distinct. in weeks nine through 12, the baby may begin sucking her thumb. by ten weeks she can yawn. by 11 weeks she can make a wide variety of facial expressions including a smile. by 12 weeks, which marks the end of the first trimester, she is capable of making a fist. but on any given day her developing parts including her heart and brain may be harvested at many planned parenthood clinics that participate in this practice across this country. if her organs are harvested, she will not carry a name. at most she will be referred to as a product of conception. despite the horrific nature of these practices, planned parenthood's outrage has been directed not at harvesting of baby parts but at the people who caught them talking about doing it on video. indeed, planned parenthood
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argues that the videos released by the center for medical progress are highly edited. but it is noteworthy to point out that the group hired by ploo planned parenthood to review the videos found that, quote, their analysis did not reveal widespread evidence of substantive manipulation, end quote. a second analysis commissioned by alliance defending freedom reached a similar conclusion. according to that report, the recorded media files indicate that the video recordings are authentic and show no evidence of manipulation or editing, quote, unquote. today's hearing is about the content contained within the videos, including admissions made by planned parenthood officials that raise serious questions about the treatment of our nation's children who may be born alive following a failed abortion. for example, the vice president of planned parenthood of the rocky mountains stated that in
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some cases babies are being born intact. she further stated sometimes we get if someone delivers before we get to see them for a procedure, then they are intact. but that's not what we go for. to ensure babies born alive in such instances are given necessary medical care, the house passed hr-3504. the born alive abortion survi r survivors protection act which requires a baby surviving abortion be given the same treatment and care that would be given to any child naturally born premature at the same age and imposes criminal penalties at the federal level to prevent the killing of human babies born alive. moreover, they may have adopted new abortion procedures to violate the abortion birth act.
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in the first video the senior director of medical services at planned parenthood fed rag of america stated that, quote, the federal abortion ban is a law and laws are up to interpretation, end quote. today's hearing is in part intended to explore what interpretations by abortion practitioners have arisen since the law's passage. i look forward to hearing from our witnesses here today and it's now my pleasure to recognize the ranking member of the committee, the gentleman from michigan, mr. conyers, for his opening statement. >> thank you, mr. chairman and members of the committee. we want to take a moment to walk through the events that have led up to this hearing. we know from reports that the
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gentleman from arizona, mr. franks and others in the majority, have viewed at least some of the videos about a month before they were released. on july 15th of this year the first video was released to the public. it was reposted online over the august break. three different house committees then launched simultaneous congressional investigations. on september 9th this committee held its first hearing on the topic at which the witnesses for the majority refused to discuss the videos at the heart of the matter. there have been since two other hearings on this topic, making this the fourth in the house in less than a month. and, finally, the majority has announced that it will create a new taxpayer-funded select
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committee to extend the so-called investigation indefinitely. as i reflect on these events i think we're able to draw some conclusions, the first being that there's no evidence in the record whatsoever of illegal activity at planned parenthood. on behalf of its 59 affiliates, the planned parenthood federation of america has provided this committee with hundreds of pages of documents. the organization is koomticoope fully with three investigations in the house. the documents we've reviewed so far allow us to go point by point to correct the false impressions created by the highly edited, highly misleading
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videos that nominally inspired these investigations. chairman chaifetz who sits on this committee and is running his own investigation into these matters and the oversight committee next door has agreed with this conclusion. last week wolf blitzer asked the gentleman from utah, is there any evidence that planned parenthood has broken any law? mr. chaifetz answered with the truth. no, i'm not suggesting that they broke the law. i'm led to conclude that this hearing, much like the broader attack on planned parenthood parenthood, may be a political
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theater. may be. designed to rally the conservative base and roll back the constitutional right to choose wherever possible. in practice these investigations have had little to do with the videos, which some went to great lengths not to discuss at our last hearing. they have everything to do with appeasing the most conservative element of one of the parties during an interparty leadership crisis and a fractious presidential primary. now, we may have a legitimate difference of opinion on roe v. wade, but it remains the law of the land. and the attempt by some to relitigate a 40-year-old decision places thousands of lives at risk.
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many women enter the health care system through a family planning provider. in fact, six in ten women who receive services at a publicly funded family planning center consider it their primary source of medical care. planned parenthood alone serves 2.7 americans every year. abortion procedures make up an incredibly small amount of the services it provides. only 3%. for example, in 2013 planned parenthood provided 900,000 cancer screenings to women across the country. 88,000 of those tests detected cancer early or identified abnormalities that might signal a greater risk of cancer. in short in this way and so many
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others, planned parenthood saves lives. and so the attempt to defund planned parenthood place each of those lives at risk. we should be grateful that the effort has been almost entirely unsuccessful at least so far on federal level. and finally it's important to on seven all of the good work this committee could be doing instead of meeting for the second time on this subject in 30 days. and as we head into our second election season since shelby county versus holder, this committee has done very little, could do a lot more to restore the enforcement mechanisms of the voting rights act. they've done little to advance
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comprehensive immigration or reform. even though it remains overwh m overwhelmingly popular and would probably easily pass the house, we've got to start acting. and so 11 million men and women are waiting to come out of the shadows and contribute to our economy and communities. and at this pace, i fear they will have to wait even longer. and although the scourge of gun violence has touched every one of our districts, including yours, mr. chairman, we've all but ignored calls to strengthen background checks and close the gun show loophole. all of these solutions would save lives, all are within our constitutional rights, and the left of missed opportunities is long and our time is short. we should not spend one more
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minute or one more taxpayer dollar vilifying planned parenthood without a speck of evidence to back these claims. this committee has too much important work to do, and i urge my colleagues to help us put this kind of theater behind us. we can do better. i thank the chairman and appreciate the opportunity to express my views. >> thanks, gentlemen. there is one minute remaining in this vote. happily we're amongst 320 members who have not yet voted. so head to the floor, and the committee will stand in recess until these votes can conclude and resume immediately thereafter. >> back live on capitol hill,
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the house judiciary committee is in recess while members vote on the floor of the house. the judiciary committee today looking at the operations of planned parenthood, and we expect the hearing to get under way again shortly. our live coverage will continue here on c-span3. until it does, a portion of hearing from earlier today when a house committee held a hearing about volkswagen's emissions test cheating. we'll show you a portion of volkswagens operations in america. >> thank you and good morning. we now convene this hearing in the oversight and subcommittee on voeks wagness emissions cheating allegations initial questions. let me start off by saying my first car was a volkswagen.
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it was a '76 volkswagen beetle. i know a lot about cars and internt combustion engines. i could take that thing apart and make it work. the beetle and the volkswagen had a legacy as the people's car to be people friendly. i loved that car, loved it a lot. not so much as to call it brad but i loved that car. but i trusted the car to get me around and i trusted that volkswagen would continue to build a reliable car. that word "trust" as you know alone is the key factor in building customer loyalty and that trust is what helped build volkswagen because we believed this company looked out for customers first. then just three weeks ago car owners around the world were shocked to learn the largest carmaker installed software for a number of years in millions of its diesel models that
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effectively defeated the emissions during driving. it followed the public announcement on september 18th it had sufficient evidence to support allegations that vw was dheet chooeting eating testing. then switch back to dancht mode when normal driving, a mode that emitted nitrogen oxygen 10 to 40 times the legal limits. worldwide the software was used in an estimated 11 million vehicles involved several vw lines. in the wake of this apparently massive deception, the energy and commerce committee opened a bipartisan investigation to get answers for the american public. this glgs will seek to understand the facts and circumstances surrounding the vw action, the impact of its decisions, and related issues about emissions compliance generally. aet this morning's hearing we'll
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receive testimony from the head of the operations mr. michael horn and with the efficiency task. in addition to subcommittee intends to pursue answers to critical issues concerning the troubling revelations about vw's actions, what happened, who was involved, and, most importantly, why. let me acknowledge that mr. horn is appearing voluntarily today and i expect that he and voeks wag listen continue to cooperate with our inquiry. this means providing documentation to the committee as quickly as possible. as i said before, there are a number of core questions we'll begin to pursue today both for volkswagen and for the epa. most critically what happened, who was involved, why were these actions taken, and we also have a number of questions taken on
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the position of customers, and the american public. i hope mr. horn can provide some important context for us and expand upon the facts in his testimony. wheel like to him to explain the current understanding of vw executives about what exactly was down to these engines and was it done to deliberately deceive government regulations and regulators and what is vw doing to fix the problem and make whole those affected by the action. at some point in 2009 vw made a choice to move forward with engines that evidence now suggests were not compliant with u.s. emissions standards. the illegal software was initially deployed in the first jen ralgs of these diesel engines that would account for approximately 300,000. however, despite the advancement in their control systems, the software remained in place and if the technology was improving what did the company understand
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about the software cheating and what does this mean for fixing these vehicles? will some be easier than others? of course, for epa we have questions about compliance and recall programs. why did epa standard compliance tests and audits fail to detect problems especially in older technology. what is epa ensuring to do to fix so that it does not negatively affect vehicle performance. there's some need for a sense of proportion regarding this matter. the 480,000 vws or so implicated in the vehicle are only 1 president 2% of the cars and strucks on the united states highway and so far we have no evidence that the software used is present in any other u.s. vehicles. epa's ongoing questions will address this question. at root the behavior to which vw at mitted represents a fundamental violation of public
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trust and the reverberations of this can be seen across the united states and across the world as people grapple with the implications. we need to develop a clear understanding on testify facts and circumstances surrounding this case and this hearing will a first important step toward that goal. i now recognize the ranking member of the subcommittee miss any geoff for five minutes. >> thank you. i'll tell you my first car was also a volkswagen. it was a 1960 vw beetle with a ragtop sun roof they inherited from my grandmother and i will tell you that 1960 beetle, i still miss that car i didn't have any lines of computer code required to operate that vehicle. in this situation, forward to today, we know some things but we don't know enough. that's why i'm glad we're having this investigation.
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we know that in may 2014 west virginia university published a study commissioned by the international council on clean transportation that found that on road emotions were well above the standards. they also did not match those found under testing conditions we know that vw trite to address it with technical issues and unexpected in-use conditions. we know that in december 2014 vw initiated a voluntary recall of nearly half a mill downvehicles to resolve among other things the emissions issues. yes, when the california resources board tested the six vehicles they found that the emissions were still above the legal standards. and we know by july of this year they would not approve the 2016 model year of diesel vehicles
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for sale unless the emissions issues could be explained. vw was essentially forced to come clean and they ultimately admitted they installed a device to circum vent it for certain air pollutant aunts we know it sensed when it was undergoing emissions sensing and ensure thad they were operating to task and we know that during normal road use, the emissions controls were reduced and the cars were producing up to 40 times more nitrogen oxide than is allowed by emissions standards. we know that half a million cars -- almost half a million cars in the united states might be affected by this. now, mr. hart, i'm glad you've come today to testify here because while we know all of the things i just talked about, there's a lot more things we don't know and that we need answers for. for example, vw hasn't revealed
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how the defeat device affects the engine, why it was installed, and how it was able to evade emissions tests. you haven't revealed when and how the engines equipped with this defeat device will be fixed. you haven't told us whether whether this fix will fill fuel economy or the performance of the vehicle. as epa and the california board were trying to figure out why the vehicle's emissions were out of compliance. you haven't revealed whether the voluntary recall that vw set in place in 2014 was just merely a ruse. s with the vw group of america actually trying to find out what was wrong with the cars and fix them or did vw know the cars had defeat devices on them and were only trying to buy time with the regulators? you haven't revealed who's responsible for this scheme. we don't know who came from
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germany and who knew about it in the united states. we've all seen the press reports and we can all speculate about what happened here and why. but until volkswagen comes forward with answers and provides some assurances that we can trust about what they're saying, the american people t regulators, and congress are all left in the dark. so i hope, mr. horn, that you've come prepared to answer some of these questions. and i also hope that vw will be prepared to work with this committee as we move forward. hundreds of thousands of owners invested money and trust in vw. many of them bought those cars specifically because they were seeking environmentally friendly vehicles. now they're left with cars with much higher levels of pollution, they don't have any answers about when or how their car will be fixed or what kind of car they'll be left with. earlierer this week i visited a volkswagen dealer in denver. i saw the pollution control equipment on the vw vehicles first hand.
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these cars account for almost 25% of the sales at that particular dealership and a significant parnl of vehicles at vw dealerships across colorado and the country. now because they can't sell them, these cars are sitting on the lots which is a scene scene that's being repeated across the country. so, mr. chairman, as you say it's small percentage of all the cars on the road in the u.s., it's a tremendous economic impact to the dealers and the consumers who don't know what's going to happen to their cars and so that's perhaps the key answer i'm looking for today. what do we do moving forward? now, mr. chairman, this subcommittee has been here before. in the last few years we've had ford, firestone, toyota, and takata. we were able to get information from all of the committees to understand what was happening. most importantly we were able to
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chart a packet forward and help guide consumers. i hope volkswagen can similarly tell us today what's happening and i hope they will get beyond these series of terrible decision and do something to restore the public trust. thank you and i yield back. >> the gentlemchairman will rec the gentleman from michigan. >> that ad campaign swept the nation in the '90s. they've enjoyed a following. but through the years something became rotten and cheating and betrayal became part of that game plan. there's a lot we don't know about vw's actions. but regardless of intent they have betrayed the trust of
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regulators, dealers, and suppliers and most important, the driving public. probably the most famous congressional hearing question is what did you know and what did you know it asked by dr. howard baker back at the senate with watergate. now we learn you knew 18 months ago. so we add what did you really do to fix it and come clean versus simply going along. ultimately the same rings true. cheaters never prosper and that's why we're here today. we have many questions about why we got here and the road ahead. why would one of the world's largest automakers go to such lengths to avoid emissions requirements. who was responsible for these decisions and why did they for years even as the technology improved continue that path. if they were willing to cut corners here, why were they done. will the fix affect the performance of these vehicles. unraveling these questions will
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take time and i don't expect that we're going to discover all the answers torkd but if vw is serious about rebuilding this broken trust they'd need a serious commitment to answer these and many other questions prompted by the actions. this requires transparency, cooperation and clear consistent communication with not only this committee, the epa and other ongoing investigations but also with its customers, suppliers, dealers and general public. vw will pay a steep price for this dirty little secret. how it responds will go a long way or building or further eroding the public's trust. they must also consider what implications this has with the thousands of americans it employs including its facility in auburn hills, michigan. every single one of us who has ties to michigan is proud of our rich tradition that's so closely intertwined with the success of
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the automobile. in fact, michigan is one of several states who have launched their own investigations. all automakers must advance by imagination, not by breaking the law. this hearing is an important step as we receive documents and information, new details are certain to emerge. i look forward to getting to the bottom of this issue as quickly as possible. i take this very personally. as the author of the tred act fro text the public, congress was very clear which included steep fines and, yes, criminal prosecution. vw has betrayed a nation. suppliers and innocent customers. ice time to clean it up or get off the road. i yield the balance of my time to advice customarym
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vice chairman blackburn. >> i think you shouank you for forward and taking responsibility. it is disappointing. i'm fully aware that our governor has been at the chattanooga facility and i know that the governor's state legislators t other members of the congressional delegation and i are quite concerned about this. you've got a lot of hard-working honest tennesseans who are at that chat. >> chattanooga facility and we're quite concerned about the actions of the few -- a few vw employees number chat nothi chattanoogaen andto tennesseans. it's basically who, what, went,
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who, where, how, and why. why you did it, how you did it, when you did it, when you knew, who carried this out, where did this take place? did i got across the brand? was it pointed at eu regulations? was it pointed at some of the climate regulations? is the epa too overburdened to have noticed the? this is a systemic, systemic failure and i will also point out someone say this is an issue, no, sir, it's an issue of inted grichlt we appreciate that you're here. we look forward to hearing from you and i want to forward the bans of my time to vice chairman mr. mckinley. >> thank you. my first car was a 1957.
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i think i got everybody beat on that. listen, there should be zero tolerance. that's why this hearing is important us. the impaired people need to understand what happened, how it happen and how it can be resolved. they feel that they've been deceived so on monday there was action taken bety attorney general to file action on this. i also. >> all of this hearing is available online at and it re-airs tonight on the c-span network. we leave it now as the house judiciary committee on planned parenthood is resuming after a recess. >> chairman, thank you. at the end of the classic movie "casablanca" an inspector issues an order to round up the usual suspects, and every time my friends on the other side of the i'll have a horrifying act that's done or alleged to be done by one of their allies they issue the roundup of usual
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excuses. we've heard them all today. don't believe your eyes or ears or what you see on the video, look somewhere else, and for goodness sake, don't focus on this horrific act but focus on another horrific act that others might have committed. this is just political theater. somehow if you're sensitive and don't like the fact that an untorn child is torn apart limb by limb, you really aren't talking about that. you have a massive attack on women and don't look at the horrific act that this group might have done because they might have done other good alkts and the excuses go on and on and the reality is there is simply no important. there is nothing that our friending on the other side of the aisle would look at this organization and say we might like you, but that's just too far, and we can't condone that mr. chairman, i would like to
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now show a video since this seems to be the day of the video, if we could roll that. >> to bring the body out. [ inaudible ] >> mr. chairman, we've heard a lot today about editing video. there's no evidence that this video has been edited or anything has been added to it. so the procedures that were discussed in there of crushing an unborn child in more than one place -- an unborn child, by the way, that has a heart, a lung, and a liver that cease so well develop thad planned parenthood would want to save the heart, the lung, and the liver but
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would not want to save the life that created it. just one simple question. is that procedure too brutal for you? >> well, sir, i'd like to respond as you started saying political theater. >> no, ma'am, you can do what you want. you're not going run the clock out on me. yes or no is it too brutal. i know you don't want to -- >> ultimately this is an attack on women's personal decisions. >> i've got five minutes. you can answer it or not. do you feel that procedure is too brutal? i understand you may not be able to answer it. >> i feel abortion should be safe and legal. >> is that procedure too brutal. >> i'm not a doctor and i can't comment on it. >> let me ask you this question. if you had a small dog and you had to put that dog to sleep, would you think it would be too brutal for the vek nairian to crush that dog in too different places. >> i trust doctors -- >> let the record show ms.
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frederickson would not answer the question. dr. levantino s that too brutal? >> every abortion involves the destruction of human life. i get frustrated sometimes when i hear it's not a baby, it's a fetus. i think we've gotten beyond it's a whole blob of cells. you know what that is? that's your son. that's your daughter. every abortion involves a son or dart. i think it's absolutely gruesome. i thought the answer you gave just a minute ago is perfect. if i abused a dog in my town, i'd be arrested. if i did abortions again, first trimester, second trimester, i'd be a hero to so many people. it's absurd. >> mr. chairman, just for the record, the point that i think disturbs so many of us is the
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exact response we heard from miss frederickson. they won't say that any procedure is too far or not enough or is too brutal and that's the purpose of these hearings because there's a big difference between saying there may not be a law to protect against something, it may not be legal and to say there was no wrongdoing done because i think what we heard on that tame was wrongdoing and with that, mr. chairman, i yield back. >> i thank you, gentlemen. i now recognize mr. mr. new york for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. we've heard a lot today about saving lives. after 23 years in congress i'm still shocked by the hypocrisy we continue to hear from my friends on the other side of the aisle. since 2013 there have been over 900 mass shootings across the country including 300 mass shootings in 2015.
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10,128 people have been killed this year alone. or not more or less mentally ill in the united states. although we have 30% of the word population the u.s. has 90% of the world's firearm homicide. think they's 3% of the world's population. how many hearings have been held on gun violence since taking over in 2011. none. since sandy hook, there have been 142 school shootings, the most recent strategy occurring on the college campus in oregon. since then 148 killings and 168 shootings in the united states. not one hearing. not one vote on gun violence. an extremist liar released a series of heavenly edited and probably illegal videos about planned parenthood an organization that has been
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providing health care and compassion to women for centuries. in the last three days the committee has spent countless hours in hearings. we have taken 20 vote this year alone restricting women's access to health care. this very hearing is the committee's second of 30 days on plant parenthood despite the fact this this entire farce is unknowingly based on lies. if my colleagues hat any shred of evidence that they had broken any laws, they would have gone to a prosecutor right away. they didn't and they don't. perhaps that's why one of my public colleagues shavitz announced ed od on tv last wee there is no evidence that planned parenthood violated any laws. if they could devote one half of the attention on the even d dimmi
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dimmick. they say the right to own a gun is protected by the constitution. that's a very funny argument coming from the other side inlight of this shameful hearing. you know what else is protected by the constitution? a woman's right to access abortion and to make her own choices about health care and whether to get an abortion. if the same colleagues refuse to take any action on gun violence, have no problem tossing the constitution out the women. measures passed at the state and local level put unbelievable restrictions on a woman's right to access abortion. women must endure invasive tests and examines, wait. take time off from work to visit the one facility in the state where abortion is still affordable. they have a constitutional right to enter. they must face regular shaming from the republicans on this committee, almost all men, i may add, for making choice to exercise their constitutional
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rights. yet there are no such restrictions requiring a gun. you can walk into a gun show at noon and walk out with a semiautomatic rifle in your hand. no background check, with later with a semiautomatic rifle in your hand. no way of making sure the gun purchase is going to someone with the proper safety training and with no history of domestic violence. imagine if we made people to jump through the same hoops to buy a firearm as they do for having an abortion. imagine the invasive questions about why you are getting the gun and whether or not you've considered all your options. imagine if the only way to get a gun was to prove to a police report that you've been raped or assaulted in the past or have a lawyer certify that your life is in physical danger unless you get a gun. think about being shamed and forced to look at graphic images when you walk into a gun shop. the nagging feeling that the government has no right to put restrictions on your constitutional right, that is what a woman feels every time she tries to make a decision
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about her health and about whether or not to access her constitutional right to an abortion. until this committee is ready to face the real crisis of gun violence in our country, to take a firm stand that enough is enough and it's time for real action these proceedings will remain a hypocritical farce. are you aware that the center for medical progress obtained its nonprofit status from the irs by representing itself as a nonprofit biomedical research and they did not indicate that political activities on their application and is this a fraud? is this illegal to provide false information to the irs? >> yes, to your first question, they did indeed -- >> use your mike. >> they did indeed make that application and i do believe it is a fraud and illegal. >> thank you. my last question is, at the moment three house committees and one senate committee are investigating planned parenthood. the majority proposes using taxpayer dollars to establish a select panel to do a fifth investigation. what do you make of the fact that the majority has committed
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these resources to attacking planned parenthood and almost none to investigate illegal activity at the center for medical progress? >> i think it indicates the true agenda is to undermine a woman's right to make personal decisions in consultation with her doctor and her family and exercise her constitutional rights to choose her own health care. >> as do the testimony of three witnesses who have nothing to say about planned parenthood but have to say about abortion generally. thank you very much. i yield back. >> now recognize the gentleman from iowa, mr. king. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i thank the witnesses for your testimony here today and listening to the gentleman from new york about the same hoops to buy a firearm as there is to get an abortion. i suggest instead in this city, for example, it's probably much easier to get an abortion than it is to buy a gun or to possess one or to transport one. that's true also in many cities including chicago, for example, where we've seen a lot of death
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and desecration that doesn't seem to be troubling the minority party either. but i'm looking through your testimony, miss fredrickson, i notice there in your testimony you say that -- you list a number of lifesaving breast exams, a number of women whose cancer was detected early, 500,000 exams, 88,000 women whose cancer was detected early and very likely it did save lives in doing that. i didn't notice -- oh, also that it had prevented an estimated 516,000 unintended pregnancies and 217,000 abortions every year. i hadn't seen planned parenthood produce a number that actually took credit for the number of abortions prevented -- or excuse me, the number of -- yeah, the number of abortions prevented. neither do i see in this testimony the number of abortions that planned parenthood does in a normal year. could you tell me what that number would be?
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>> i believe -- i believe the number is about 350,000 per year. >> and what would the typical price be for a typical abortion? >> i do not know. i do not work for planned parenthood. >> and could i -- could i just then state, i will, off their website, $1,500. and when i punch that through my calculator it was 340,000 was the number i used rather than 350, but we're in the ballpark, and at $1,500 each that turned out to be $510 million and $510 million happens to be very close to identical to the exact number of the appropriations that would go in to planned parenthood should the -- should the appropriations go forward, which it has out of this house at least for a couple of months. and it's hard for me to accept the idea that this is a nonprofit organization and i would turn to miss thayer, and your testimony spoke to that. seeing those kind of numbers, miss thayer, could you be
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convinced that planned parenthood is nonprofit? >> officially planned parenthood is a nonprofit. but their main concern is really their bottom line. we would have monthly managers meetings via the very webcam system that they installed to do the abortions. and on a spreadsheet they would have our goals, our quotas, for every single service and supply that we had. if we met our goal, that square would be green. if we were 5% below, it would be yellow. and if we were 10% below our quota it would be red and we would have to have a corrective action plan on how to correct that. and abortion was one of those -- one of those items. if we didn't do abortions at that center, then we had a goal for abortion referrals. >> could you say clearly here in your testimony with confidence that in your years working for
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planned parenthood that even though planned parenthood is filed as a nonprofit that they are profit driven? >> well, they are all about the profit. for example, they purchase birth control pills for $2.88 a cycle. bill the iowa taxpayers $35 a cycle, are reimbursed a little over $26 and then they solicit from the very women that miss fredrickson referred to as very low income, at or below poverty level, a $10 donation per cycle for each pill that goes out, each cycle of pills. >> that's clearly a distinct profit that most businesses would like to see in their margins. i'd like to turn again to miss fredrickson and i recall in your testimony you talked about the gap that would be created if we didn't fund planned parenthood. and would you say that there's no way to fill the gap of services that you testified that there's not a way to fill that gap some other way?
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>> i think we already have evidence that it is nearly impossible, if not impossible, to fill that gap. the example from texas and even in louisiana where they have tried to cut back on planned parenthood services and found that they simply could not serve the population that needed those services. >> then tell me, if you would, how did planned parenthood grow into this, quote, service, close quote and into this gap that can't be created another way? are you submitting, then, that free enterprise and demand and transportation and funding and resources wouldn't grow another entity or two or three or four or five that would -- that would fill the same demand that you're saying that planned parenthood only can fill? >> with all due respect, sir, we're talking about medicaid patients primarily who get these services so, no, i don't think they could be filled by the free enterprise system. >> what do you think would happen? >> well, unfortunately i think we'd have more unintended pregnancy and ultimately, unfortunately, more abortions. >> i just suspect that the
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witness hasn't considered how this comes together, how free enterprise moves and accepts medicaid checks, et cetera, how the clinic system works, how health care providers are able to take a look at the marketplace and supply a demand. and i suggest that that would be supplied without any great concern and i would yield back. >> and i thank the gentleman, and i'll recognize myself now for five minutes for questions. forgive me, i'll recognize now miss jackson lee for five minutes. >> let me thank you very much, all the witnesses, whenever we have witnesses come, it's appropriate for members of congress to thank you because we know the sacrifice that you make to come. let me also say that this is a judiciary committee, and it is important for us to be fact-finding, but also to maintain and adhere to current, stated statutory or court law that has set precedent for the
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actions that may be in place now. obviously as legislators we have the right to make determinations. let me also say that i respect and appreciate the differences of opinion that are in this room and among those in this audience and on the panel as well. i'm interested in the truth. but i am one who has known people and have lived through the back alley abortions and seen so many people suffer and die because of choices that they intelligently wanted to make, desperately had to make, and did not have the adequate medical care, consultation that was needed. let me thank you, doctor, anytime i see a doctor, i want to thank you for taking the oath and recognizing the need for good care. but i do want to go back to what this hearing is all about. are you representing -- i understand you're under oath. are you representing that the video that you showed was a planned parenthood video?
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>> no, ma'am, i'm not. the reason i brought that video forward, however -- >> i have a short period of time. >> go ahead, ma'am. >> so, that is not a planned parenthood video? >> that is not a planned parenthood video. >> and i want to make clear the exploring medical ethics at the nation's largest abortion provider. >> miss thayer. are you a lawyer? >> no, ma'am. >> are you trained in nonprofit law? >> no, ma'am. >> would you, then, have a legal understanding of the rights, responsibilities of a nonprofit and what they're allowed to do? well, i ran a nonprofit for almost 18 years. >> are you a lawyer that understands the law of nonprofits 501-c3? >> i did have an understanding -- >> but not from a legal perspective. >> you would not be able to discern the appropriate response for federal funding being used for medicaid, health care
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matters versus things that you've now become opposed to? which your right to do. not from a legal perspective. >> one of my biggest concerns with why they were soliciting donations from medicaid eligible women and i know it wasn't right. >> is that something you are submitting into the record? you have some statements from the medicaid women that were solicited? >> i did that every day that i worked there. your pills are $35. the donation is $10, will it be cash or credit? >> were you able to discern by the understanding of the bylaws of planned parenthood just what those requests might be? they have every right to engage -- i'm not saying it's true -- in a voluntary perspective -- in a voluntary request that someone voluntary may desire to do. but let me go to miss fredrickson and set the tone for this particular hearing. it has been said by congressman
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chaffetz the chairman of the oversight committee among many hearings that planned parenthood did, if i might quote correctly, violated no law. is roe v. wade, the law of the land? >> yes, it is. >> is that the right for women to choose? >> yes. that provides -- >> it's no billboard pronoun pronouncement that we're promoting abortions, is that the case? the law is simply on the ninth amendment the right to privacy? >> under the constitution women have the right to make those personal decisions. >> not an advertisement and billboard for abortion? it's a right to privacy under the ninth amendment? >> yes. >> let me also say that the political agenda that has been framed many of you have seen, i'm not going to ask you that question, but i'd like to focus on your understanding, miss fredrickson, of what planned parenthood does. do they legitimately have health care for women? >> planned parenthood is our nation's leading provider of reproductive health care for women. they provide a critical service.
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one in five american women go to a planned parenthood clinic in their lifetime. >> let me pursue another line of questioning. in order to make sure that we know that we have planned parenthood, excuse me, has a medical structure. as i understand it, abortion care is included in medical training, clinical practice and continued medical education. studies show abortion has 99% safe record, but more importantly the 57,000 members of the american congress of o y sty obstetricians have indicated that that is the case and that there's misinformation about how abortions today are handled versus -- remember what i said, back alley and coat hanger. are you familiar with that contrast, what women went through i'd say 20, 30 years ago versus what they're doing today? >> yes. i understand that before roe versus wade many women died in back alley abortions and that it's a tremendous advance in this country to have safe and legal abortions available for women.
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>> let me add the fourth amendment to my line of reasoning as well. but let me just ask this question as i close. on this video, are you familiar with the name mr. phailin -- i'm sorry, his name is mr. deleiden? >> from the videos, yes. >> do you realize that he has not publicly released the entire unedited videos? >> so i understand that no member of this committee has seen the entire unedited videos, yes. >> do you realize he's taken the fifth amendment not willing to come before any committee? >> yes. >> do you also understand he stole the i.d. of a fellow classmate in high school who happened to be a feminist in order to portray these distorted political and biased videos? >> yes, i understand that is the case. >> if we are here -- and i close, mr. chairman, i thank you for this. if we're here to find the facts, is it not factual that through all of the hearings we've not heard of any statement about planned parenthood in essence
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violating the law, roe v. wade, constitutional amendments and the bill of rights, have you heard that, miss fredrickson? >> no. no one has been able to substantiate any allegation of wrongdoing against planned parenthood and indeed mr. shaffer f chaffetz has agreed there is no wrongdoing. >> mr. chairman, point of parliamentary inquiry? >> state your point. >> mr. chairman, i'd like to know what the proper procedure would be. i think this witness has just testified, this hearing is entitled planned parenthood exposed examining abortion practices and medical ethics at the nation's largest abortion provider. this witness played a tape that he has now admitted under oath was not prepared in connection with planned parenthood at all. and so i'd ask that it be stricken from the record of this hearing. >> yeah. the chair is the judge of relevancy here and the gentleman never had suggested -- >> it was presented to a committee having a hearing on planned parenthood with the clear implication that it was
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relevant to the hearing. it's not. i'd ask -- i make a motion to strike it from the record. >> well, would you also include in your motion mr. -- the gentleman from new york's testimony on gun control? is that relevant? >> my motion is on the recording that the doctor presented that he admitted has nothing to do with planned parenthood. i've made a motion. >> he made his comments about guns almost entirely. >> point of order. i've made a motion that that be stricken from the record of this hearing as irrelevant to a hearing on planned parenthood and i'd ask for a vote on my request. >> i'll second the motion. >> all those in favor say aye. the gentleman restate. >> to strike the video of the doctor which was not prepared or generated in connection with any service by planned parenthood -- there's already been a vote? >> reserving my right to object, it was the unanimous consent request to enter the information
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into the record. the gentleman had his opportunity to object at the time that the information was entered into the record and i object to his motion as being out of order. >> that is not correct. it was not a unanimous consent. >> all those in favor say aye? >> my motion, aye. >> all opposed?
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please call the roll. [ roll call ] mr. king votes no. mr. franks. mr. franks votes no. mr. gohmert. mr. gohmert votes no. mr. jordan?
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mr. poe? mr. chaffetz? mr. murray? no? mr. gowdy? mr. labrador? mr. farrenthal? mr. collins? mr. disantis? miss walters? mr. buck? mr. ratcliffe? mr. trott? mr. bishop?
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mr. conyers? mr. nadler? >> aye. >> mr. nadler votes aye. miss lofgren? >> aye. >> miss lofgren votes aye. miss jackson lee? miss jackson lee votes aye. mr. cohen? mr. cohen votes aye. mr. johnson? >> aye. >> mr. johnson votes aye. miss chu? mr. deutsch? mr. deutsch votes aye. mr. gutierrez? >> aye. >> mr. gutierrez votes aye.
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miss fast? mr. richmond? miss dell beni? votes aye. mr. jeffrey? mr. cecilini? >> aye. >> mr. peters? >> mr. chaffetz? >> mr. chaffetz votes no. >> the gentleman from virginia. >> no. >> mr. forbes votes no. >> regular order result, please. >> mr. labrador? >> mr. labrador votes no. >> regular order, can we have the results? >> mr. chairman?
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mr. chairman? clerk will -- mr. chairman? report the vote. mr. forbes? parliamentary inquiry. >> state your inquiry. >> as i understand this is a motion -- >> point of reference. >> i'll ask for a ruling for the chair and take time to ask for the parliamentarian. >> report the vote. >> report the vote. >> the chairman can consider that. >> state your inquiry. >> mr. chairman, i just wanted to ask if this was a motion to strike testimony of the witness or a video. and if we had such motion, because i don't recall ever
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having one in this committee where we were striking testimony of witnesses that had been made in here. >> as i understand, mr. forbes, the minority is asking to strike the video which, of course, was given to them days ago and was not a surprise to them in any way. is that correct? >> given to us yesterday morning. >> mr. chairman -- >> that's the motion, yes. >> regular order. can we have the vote result? >> mr. chairman, this regular order to have parliament -- >> the gentleman state his order? >> yes, sir. mr. chairman, i'll wait and i'll state my parliamentary procedure once they are quiet. have we had a procedure before for under our parliamentary rules to strike evidence of a witness? because i don't ever remember one taking place in this case. >> we've already taken a vote. >> i'm told not in this committee. >> okay. please announce the vote. >> mr. chairman -- >> point of order, mr. chairman.
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>> mr. chaffetz. >> mr. chaffetz votes no. mr. chairman nine members voted aye, seven members voted no. >> and the motion is agreed to. i'll now recognize myself for five minutes for questions. you know, one of the hallmarks of humanity throughout history is our astonishing proclivity as human beings to obscure, and rationalize away an incontrovertible truth in our own minds or before others to achieve some solidarity or
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temporary acceptance with our own insular peer group. it's also astonished me to what lengths we go on this issue. and i think i know why. because we never really asked this central question. and the central question is, does abortion kill a little baby. if abortion doesn't kill a little baby, then i'm here to pretty much suggest that we shouldn't be having such a hearing or anything like that. but if abortion really does kill a little baby, then those of us seated in the greatest nation in the history of the world, the land of the free and the home of the brave, are sitting in the midst of the greatest human genocide in the history of humanity. and the victims are the most helpless of all children. we recently had a vote in the house of representatives to
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protect born alive children. there was not one person to my left that voted for that bill. born alive children. and i would just suggest that if we've come to the moment in america where we no longer are willing to protect born alive children, then it is time to reassess who we are and whether or not the founding fathers' dreams still have any place in our society. mr. levantino, if a child is born alive during an abortion procedure, a doctor has an ethical duty to save that child, correct? >> he does. he has an ethical duty to provide care whether it's lifesaving or palliative. >> well, the president of planned parenthood cecille richards has said in testimony that she'd never heard of such a circumstance happening at
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planned parenthood clinics. do you believe that among the hundreds of thousands of abortions planned parenthood commits every year that there are, in fact, children born alive but die because they do not receive appropriate care? >> i can't speak specifically from experience regarding planned parenthood in that regard. the reason i introduced a video was because planned parenthood has stated, and we understand that they do perform, late-term abortions. it's been stated i believe by miss richards that they perform late term abortions up to viability but that was never defined. if you are talking about late term abortions in terms of planned parent hood you need to know what the tech neesks are that's why tried the testimony that i do. >> based on your experience what is your assessment of how low-income women's health care could be met without planned parenthood? >> with all respect to miss frederickson, her assertion and
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backing it up with statements from other people that it is, quote, ludicrous were her words that other providers could adequately take on planned parenthood patients, the statement itself is ludicrous. it's interesting. if you want to learn about low-income women and health care, you should come to southern new mexico. where i've worked for over 13 years. this is a map. planned parenthood facilities in new mexico are in albuquerque, santa fe, and farmington. the three richest areas in the state. there isn't a single planned parenthood south of belin county in new mexico and there hasn't been for over a decade. the very area that i work. one of the other counties is the poorest in the country and if you want to understand about indigent care come there, please. miss richardson talked specifically about the health care that planned parenthood provides.
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specifically family planning, counseling and contraception. pregnancy tests, pap smears, and breast exams. oh, and std testing which he did not mention it but it was in her written testimony. those are the services they provide. let me tell you something the poor people in my area get contraceptive counseling, pap smears and truly comprehensive health care from our health care clinics. you've heard -- this committee has heard i know there are over 16,000 health care clinics across the country. look at my map again this is covering new mexico in terms of those very same health clinics. and unlike planned parenthood they are not a 9:00 to 5:00 business monday through friday, they are there 24 hours a day to serve the women. and they are taken care of not only if they need pap smears or breast exams they get taken care of if they have had a headache
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or nausea or a stroke or a heart attack or all the other things that happen. that's what we call comprehensive health care and that's what's available at these clinics. $500 million -- as i doctor i would give you my opinion that $500 million poured into planned parenthood would be far better served, those women across the country, would be far better served if that money were put into community health centers where women could get truly comprehensive care. not just pap smears and breast exams. >> i thank the gentleman. and now i would recognize i believe mr. cohen from tennessee for five minutes. >> thank you, sir. >> miss lofgren, forgive me. >> thank you, mr. chairman. this hearing is disappointing in so many ways, it's really hard to begin. but let me just say that it is a myth to think that if we were
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able to defund planned parenthood, which i think legally we couldn't do, i mean, that there is the capacity to provide the medical services to the women who are being served. and the last time that we had a hearing in this committee on this same subject, i put a letter into the record of that hearing from the california nonprofit clinics saying they do not have the capacity to pick up the caseload of planned parenthood just flat-out they could not do it. there's been a lot of discussion about abortion here today. and abortion is a very emotional subject for people in this country, and i think that is why we've ended up in the situation we have, which is there is no federal funding for abortion. there's no federal funding for abortion. and so if the effort to cut off funding for planned parenthood would succeed, we would cut off contraception, but we would not
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cut off abortion, which is an absurd result i must say. you know, i have known women who have had abortions, and i've never met a woman who felt happy about it. this is not a festive occasion. it's a situation where women find themselves and they make a choice instead of the government telling them what to do. i think of the daughter-in-law of a dear friend of mine who had an abortion late in her pregnancy when she found out that the much wanted child she was carrying had all of her brains had formed outside of the cranium. this child was not going to live, and she and her husband were devastated but she was told by her physician that if she carried this child to term, not only would the child die, but
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she might die. and certainly she would never have the chance of having another child. we think about the women all over the country who struggling with this decision and make a decision, but one of the important things is to provide for contraception so that women don't have to be faced with that terrible decision. and i do think that one of the most important things that planned parenthood does is to provide birth control to women who want to control their own fertility. and if we were to cut off funding for planned parenthood, that would not be available to the women, many women, who live in my community, in san jose and in gilroy, that would just not be available, and i think that would be a very wrong thing. now, i think there's been a lot of dirt in the air about the planned parenthood as an
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institution. i'll just say that planned parenthood in san jose is a well respected organization. i know thousands of women who have told me how much they rely on planned parenthood, not only for pap smears and for birth control and for cancer screenings, but they even do some pediatric care. i mean, they're full service, and it's a really important institution and a well trusted institution in my district and that's what i hear from families and from women back home. now, this is in contrast to some of the things that have been said here in washington. you know, earlier in the oversight and government reform committee, there was a chart indicating that planned parenthood performed more abortions than lifesaving procedures in 2013. i wonder, miss fredrickson, did you look at that chart? did you see the hearing?
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>> no, i didn't see that chart. >> okay. i don't think that that's an accurate chart and, in fact, i think it's since been proven that that is not correct. let me ask you about -- we've had all these hearings about planned parenthood. there's not been any evidence that planned parenthood has violated the law in any way. are you aware of any hearings that have been held about this cmp group, about whether they filed false tax returns, whether they were operating in compliance with the law? >> well, so far i don't believe there have been any congressional inquiries. i do believe there is a court case proceeding, however. >> i know that our attorney general in california is looking in to it since they incorporated there. i'll just close, mr. chairman, by saying that i hope that this is the end of the persecution of planned parenthood. it is important, the service they provide for the women of america, and i hope that we will
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stop trying to smear this wonderful institution. i yield back. >> now, the gentleman from virginia, mr. forbes, is recognized. >> i make a motion that the video part of mr. levantino's testimony previously stricken from the record be made part of the record. >> all those in favor of the motion respond by saying aye. those opposed no. the ayes have it and the video is made a part of the record. and the gentleman is now recognized for his questions.
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the gentle woman from california, miss walters, is recognized for five minutes. you're next. you want to pass or do you -- okay. the gentleman from ohio, mr. chavez, is recognized for his questions. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to thank you for holding this hearing. the gentle lady from california i have great respect for indicated that this hearing is disappointing, and it is certainly disappointing that we have to hold a hearing like this. about an organization that every year brutally kills hundreds of thousands of unborn, innocent babies and sells their body parts. and does that for profit. i happen to represent most of
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the city of senof cincinnati. and planned parenthood does approximately 330,000 abortions, the largest abortion provider in this country, they basically wipe out the population of the city of cincinnati every year. it's about 300,000 people in that particular community. and it's just -- so it is very disappointing that we have to have a hearing like this and hear the testimony. miss fredrickson, you earlier said that -- i think your comment about mr. chaffetz something along the lines, well, it isn't against the law. and if that's the case, what the organization that you're here today testifying on their behalf today, if it's accurate that what you're doing, destroying little innocent unborn lives and selling their body parts for profit, if that's not against
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the law, well, we damn well better change the law and make it against the law because we're supposed to be a civilized society in a civilized country. and to think that that kind of behavior is occurring in these modern times, it's -- it's -- it makes one wonder what the hell is going on in this country. it's disgusting. and when i saw these videos -- and i know the excuse is, oh, well, we didn't know we were being taped. i mean, what a -- what a defense. we didn't know that somebody might actually find out what's going on in planned parenthood facilities all over the country. that it might get out what's going on. i mean, that's a heck of a defense. and i -- and i -- some of the people that are here, you know, all the other other three witnesses in particular, i think it takes a lot of courage to have -- to experience some of the things you experienced over the years and to be willing to come here and testify about what
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has happened. and thank god that you are willing to do that. all three, all the stories. and, dr. levantino, i heard you testify in this committee in the past. and it's -- you know, thank you for coming forward and doing what you're doing now to expose what has occurred. i guess -- and i probably used up a lot of my time already. but, doctor, i guess, if you could, again -- and i know you already said it, but identify think it bears -- it bears hearing it a second time. you know, in your past obviously you did perform abortions, and then at some point in your life decided that i'm not going to do that anymore. could you share, again, why that -- what it was that made that change for you? >> congressman, it was the loss of my own adopted daughter that
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made me look very seriously what i was doing with abortions. >> thank you. thank you. miss stoltenberg, you -- you indicated that you've -- and i know you got a whole bunch of other women that were in your circumstances, that their lives have been changed. would you want to share some of the stories of other women? you don't necessarily have to give their names, but what you heard from others and how this has affected their lives so that there's actually two victims here. there's the unborn child, and there's also the woman who has been a victim oftentimes in a planned parenthood facility since they're the largest abortion provider. but could you share in the brief time i have left anything you'd like to say about the other women you've talked to over the years about that. >> i would, sir. i've heard a lot here today about safe abortion. and all of these women's stories refute safe abortion. we are not having safe abortion in this country.
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women are being maimed. they are being harmed. they are not being able to have their own children because of it. their children are dying on tables. they are turning to alcohol and drugs and suicide. i do post-abortion counseling. and i just connell unseled a wo the prior months that has tried to kill herself three different times and almost succeeded. why aren't we talking about why this -- this is not safe. these are the stories to tell it. and there would be more stacked up here if women were not too ashamed and too afraid to come out and talk about this. and sometimes it doesn't happen for years. i wasn't able to talk about this for five years. there are women that won't be able to talk about it for 10 and 20 years. and i've heard multiple stories, hundreds, of how they have been maimed and wounded in every way.
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i can't even -- it was hard for me to even bond with my own child that i adopted because of this procedure. i -- i'm just begging for you people to protect women. this is not a good choice for women. protect us. do the right thing. instead of looking at pocketbooks. i would like to ask the committee how many people are making -- are receiving donations from planned parenthood on their campaigns. and that saddens my heart, because would you choose that over protecting women? >> thank you very much. i yield back my time. >> the gentleman from tennessee, mr. cohen, is recognized for five minutes. >> mr. franks made a comment about a bill that was on the floor, about three, four weeks ago. born alive children bill. on that same day there was
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another bill on the floor to defend -- to defund planned parenthood. and nobody on this side voted for them. he's right. and they didn't come to the subcommittee and they didn't go to the full committee for a mark up or for a hearing. because regular order did not apply because the pope was going to be here and we wanted to put the focus on this issue because it was politics. we're supposed to go to committees for hearings like we're having today, and if there's a bill -- and there's no bill here. this is just show business hearing, then there's supposed to be a mark up. there was none of that. it went straight to the floor. no amendments allowed in rules committee. so protocol was just done away with because of politics. just like benghazi was politics and kevin mccarthy told you it was politics and it accomplished its purpose of the woman who is going to lead the democratic party -- >> will the gentleman yield? >> no, i won't. but just like that and he
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admitted that's what they were doing and this planned parenthood is the same deal. they're having a special committee they've now set up and yet representative chaffetz said that's not any evidence that there's been any law violated and there isn't and yet we're having a special committee. let me ask the doctor, you admitted that your video had nothing to do with -- nothing to do with planned parenthood, correct? >> the video that was shown was not shot at planned parenthood but may be relevant to procedures planned parenthood -- >> don't tell me about relevance. answer the question. it had nothing to do with planned parenthood? >> the video was not shot at planned parenthood. >> did you ever work for planned parenthood? >> yes, sir. >> when? >> when i was a resident. >> not when you were in private practice. >> no. >> you didn't do eight years working at planned parenthood. there >> sorry, sir? >> this is talked about medical ethics is what this is entitled examining abortion procedures and medical ethics. does anybody know one person that lost their medical license
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because of activity at planned parenthood? mr. stoltenberg, do you know of anybody that lost their medical license? no? miss thayer, do you know of anybody that lost their medical license? >> no. >> doctor, do you know anybody that lost their medical license? >> i do not. >> medical ethics. case closed. second question, miss -- i don't have your name right. >> stoltenberg. >> stoltenberg. and i'm sorry for your problems that you've had and your history. your first abortion was at planned parenthood. >> that's correct. >> where was your second abortion? >> emma goldman's clinic. >> where was your third abortion? >> i believe it was at emma goldman's and i don't remember. >> and it's not planned parenthood, right? >> they do the same types of procedures there. >> a lot of places do the same procedure but this hearing is about planned parenthood, so your second and third abortions had nothing to do with planned parenthood, right? miss thayer, you now have a not
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for profit, responsible -- what's the name of your not for profit you run? >> cornerstone for life. >> do you draw a salary there? >> i get a stipend. >> a stipend. >> what is that? >> $1,000 a month. >> you are considered, quote-unquote, a christian speaker. do you get paid to make your speeches or just expenses? >> usually i don't get paid at all. >> i get my expenses. >> i'm not being paid to be here. >> i know that. the government doesn't pay any of us too much. the fact is this hearing is just like ben gazzy. it's just like the select committee on planned parenthood, it's politics and yet we got major problems going on in this country. the whole idea that this is about planned parenthood is wrong and we've -- dr. levantino has admitted, medical ethics, everybody, there's no evidence of medical impropriety by planned parenthood, only a title that has been put up her.
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and miss stoltenberg, one-third of her history is planned parenthood. it's unfortunate this is the way we're spending our time. it's really unfortunate. and appreciate planned parenthood for what they do for lower income women. for women who need health servi services, who need family planning, who need cancer exams, cervical, breast, et cetera, and are performed by planned parenthood and i'm glad medicaid reimburses them and that's good. i yield back the balance of my time. >> the chair recognizes the gentleman from utah, mr. chaffetz, for his time. >> members, please be careful using this. the context of the comments that i made were in relationship to a hearing as the chairman of the oversight committee that i conducted. the hearing that we conducted in oversight was about the finances of planned parenthood. we didn't get into the content of what they do. we didn't get into the content
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of the video. we didn't get into the practices that they -- that they do. we didn't get into the fetal body tissue issues. we didn't do that. we were very narrowly focused on the finances. the point we were making is that planned parenthood had revenue of $127 million more than their expenses. and we started to look as a nonprofit organization on what people were making and how they were spending that money. they were sending money overseas. they were spending money and giving it to political organizations. they were -- have a lot of shared services. i think that's a legitimate question as we look at the finances of an organization that is structured as a nonprofit organization. i was asked a direct question about the finances. that's the way i took the question given that that's what the direction and the drive of the hearing was about. did we find any wrongdoing. the answer was no.
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>> would the gentleman yield? >> but to suggest -- i will in just one moment. just let me finish that thought. it is inappropriate to suggest that i have come to some grand conclusion about every part of their operation. we did in the oversight and government reform committee, we did subpoena the videos. we have some of those videos in the safe. we have jointly worked with the democrats on that. we had a court ruling earlier this week to get the rest of those videos. there was a temporary restraining order in california that would not release those videos. the judge recently ruled in our favor those videos are now being sent to congress. i don't -- they may have arrived in the last few hours. i'm just not aware of it. and then i will work with elijah cummings and figure out the best course on what to do with these videos. but just caution to members that it's a bit of a stretch to say that i have done some conclusive
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investigation on all the actions of planned parenthood. did i look at the finances and have a hearing specifically as to the revenue portion and how they spend? yes. was there any wrongdoing? i didn't find any. but i do think it's a legitimate question for all of us why do we send money to an organization where the revenues exceed their expenses by $127 million. it doesn't sound like an organization that needs to be supplemented by taxpayer dollars. that was my point. i'm happy to yield. >> would the gentleman yield for a question? i just want to ask the representative whether or not you have any evidence whatsoever that planned parenthood has broken the law in any way? >> i think -- i think some of the video that's been out there, the rumors that have been swirling, some of the testimony that we've heard causes a lot of people to legitimately ask and dive into whether or not what
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they're doing is illegally. i think it's a very legitimate question from an objective point of view without getting the emotions of it. and so i think there will continue to be investigations. i voted in favor of the select committee, which i think does have to go further and dive deeper into those issues. but i don't think that the final chapter has been written on that. my point was we were talking about specifically about the finances. and i would remind members, there was all this criticism, we were going after women. that is so false. what is the first not-for-profit organization that we went after in the oversight and government reform committee? it was the nfl. i called out the nfl. they were structured as a not-for-profit organization. we called out roger goodell for making an exorbitant salary and taking advantage of the tax code and, do you know what, the nfl to their credit restructured and for the first time i believe it started the 1st of july, they are now no longer a not-for-profit organization. so, in a very bipartisan way,
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with elijah cummings and the democrats, we worked on that issue and made a major transformation, a major change, and i think looking at another not-for-profit organization who is taking a lot, hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayer money, that's a legitimate decision in the context of an 18 plus trillion dollar debt. and that's the discussion we had. i'm proud of it. and i think we had a very good hearing. with that, mr. chairman, i yield back. >> the chair thanks the gentleman and recognizes the gentleman from georgia, mr. johnson, for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. mrs. stoltenberg, would you mind me having a look at one of the books that you have compiled? >> would you like me to bring it up to you? >> no, i'll send someone down to take a look at it. and while she's coming down to do that, let me ask dr. levantino a question, sir, is there any circumstance under which you would agree that a woman should have a right to
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have an abortion to abort a fetus that was -- that arose from inscest or rape? >> if i were a congressman, sir, i would support such a law. >> you would support a law that would ban abortions -- >> not ban allow. >> that would allow. so, you believe that it's -- a woman should have a right to choose in the case of incest or rape? >> if a woman is pregnant by incest or rape, her child is innocent all the same. morally i have a great problem with that. politically, i would vote for such a law. >> and what about you, mrs. thayer? >> two wrongs don't make a right. sperm meets egg. unique dna, heartbeat at 21 days. it's never okay to have an abortion. we have 57 million missing people since 1973. >> so, you went to work at planned parenthood knowing that
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part of the work that planned parenthood does is terminating pregnancies. >> well, actually, no, i didn't. >> you did not know that when you went to work? >> no, i started there as a clinic assistant and -- >> let me ask you this question. you are a woman who was fired by planned parenthood, and you are a disgruntled exemployee, is that correct? >> well, that's what they say. but i'm -- >> well, you were fired, correct? >> i was -- they were downsizing. >> and you are now disgruntled, is that not correct? >> no, that's not correct. >> so you love planned parenthood. >> i loved my work there. there were things that happened there that i knew were wrong like making medicaid eligible women pay for their pills. >> do you believe that they should be defunded? >> indeed i do. i don't think one more dime of taxpayer money should go to an organization that's rot wiwrough
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fraud. >> and thank you, miss thayer. you've got a lawsuit pending, by the way, do you? >> i do. whistle-blower. >> it's a whistle-blower case if you win you'll make a lot of money. >> we haven't really talked about that. >> well, you'll make a lot of money if you win. take it from me. >> well, i don't need a lamborghini and my ford fiesta is paid for, so i don't know what i would do with that. >> well, money doesn't matter, though, to you. >> right. telling the truth is what matters. >> all right. okay. well, mr. levantino, as far as you know planned parenthood doesn't make political contributions, does it? >> i have no idea what contributions planned parenthood makes. >> or if they do make contributions. they don't, do they, mrs. frederickson? >> i am not familiar with the entire corporate structure of planned parenthood. >> you're not on. >> all right. well, doctor, are you aware of
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the stories of the many women who have -- whose lives have literally been saved by planned parenthood? >> in what way, sir? >> well, that's not my question. my question is, are you aware of that being the case? >> hard to answer the question without knowing in what context you're asking it. >> okay. how about you, miss thayer? >> i guess i would ask the same question. >> okay. you don't want to answer the question, then. well, you haven't heard about the story of tiffany who was so broke that she couldn't afford a regular doctor's visit, so planned parenthood was her only option, and that a routine pap smear at planned parenthood diagnosed her with cervical cancer, the early discovery of which saved her life. you're not familiar with tiffany's case? >> i guess i would ask how much money they asked from tiffany after they did her pap smear. >> well, i'm sure that it was
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gladly payable for her life to be saved. >> it would be 50% of whatever her charges were that day. >> it could not be more than the value of her life, i can guarantee you that. i'm sure she's quite happy at the little bit that she paid. but -- >> if she would have gone to a federally qualified health center it would have been free. >> maybe she could not have gotten transportation. >> well, in my town it's four blocks from the planned parenthood. >> that's in your neighborhood, though, but there are other people with different circumstances, and shouldn't you be concerned about them? >> well, there's 20 free clinics for every 1 planned parent hood compared to planned parenthoods they're everywhere. >> and the purpose of this hearing was to shut down planned parenthood because of abortion. >> the time of the gentleman has expired. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas, mr. gohmert, for five minutes. would you yield back to me briefly? >> yes, i yield back.
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>> thank you. i just want to state for the record regarding the point miss thayer just made, in the state of georgia there are four planned parenthood locations. most or all of which provide abortion services. in georgia there are 274 other health care alternatives that provide women's services that do not provide abortion, so in terms of convenience and location to get to, i think there would be a good argument that there's much more convenience to get to health care facilities -- these are public health care facilities that do not include abortion services. the gentleman -- >> thank you. reclaiming my time. miss thayer, i think there was some effort to cast doubt on your capability. in working for planned parenthood since you were not an attorney. i don't know how many attorneys we have running planned parenthood facilities, but i
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hope there aren't many. >> there's typically one probably per affiliate. >> really? one lawyer per planned parenthood affiliate? >> yes. lobbying and run the pac, the political action committee. >> planned parenthood has a pac? >> yes, they make donations. >> and how many mammograms do those pacs do? >> zero. planned parenthood doesn't do mammograms. >> so if we cut funding for planned parenthood across the country, how many women would not -- would be denied mammograms? >> zero. >> but if we cut funding for planned parenthood, there would be some lawyers that do lobbying and some people that get political donations that would not be getting those political donations and lawyers that would have to look for some other form
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of money and financing, right? >> yes. >> my friend from california indicated there was a myth that if we defund planned parenthood that bee could provide services to all the women that planned parenthood had been helping. and yet, when we hear the actual facts, it turns out, wow, if we provided the money directly to health care facilities that do nothing but help women with the full range of services for women, including mammograms and things that planned parenthood never does, it sounds like that women would have even better services, more services, even though a lot of hearts would break for the lawyers that would
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not be able to get the federal funding and be able to lobby and donate to our democratic friends. i was so pleased with the comment from my friend from tennessee that benghazi was politics. that's exactly what we've been trying to get to. it was politics! you had people meeting here in america in washington while people were dying while ty woods was gathering david oven and glen doherty and going to the rooftop to man guns to try to protect the people in those facilities. yes, benghazi was about politics. and i would love to know what the president was doing that night because i can tell you, if i had people that worked for me, my personal ambassador is missing, i could not go to bed.
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and, yet, apparently there was plenty of rest before he went to the fund-raiser in las vegas the next day. yes, my colleague is right. benghazi was about politics, and we need to get to the bottom of why those four people were killed while nobody in washington that knew what was going on lifted a finger. and why david oven doesn't even get an american plane, somebody else has to provide a plane. he's on a gurney and they're beating his leg blown off against the sides of that little plane while somebody in washington knows but they're doing nothing. you bet it was politics, and a lot of -- four people died and a lot of people suffered because of that politics. this is a hearing about planned parenthood. my colleagues want to keep talking about benghazi.
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i felt like if they're going to bring it up, we need to say, yes, that was politics, and we need to find out why it was so political instead of coming together as american and protecting those people. my time's expired. >> the chair recognizes the gentleman from florida. >> thank you, mr. chairman. it's remarkable to me that the two most important issues to the majority have now collided into one hearing. that a planned parenthood hearing has become a hearing on benghazi. yesterday the house created a select committee to investigate abortion practices meaning that today's hearing is even more pointless than it was before. the house judiciary committee is now one of four committees here in the house investigating planned parenthood. what exactly are we investigating today? let's be clear. no one said this yet but we just need to be clear about it. the goal of the majority is to return to a nation where roe v. wade is not the law of the land
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and where women do not enjoy the constitutional right that the supreme court made clear they have to make decisions about their own body. that's what this is about. now i don't know why we're here. we're not here to talk about the fruitless investigations taken by six different states, including my own that have failed to find any legal wrongdoing. we're not here to discuss the fetal tissue donation. virtually every person in this country has benefited from research using fetal tissue and we're not here to discuss the federal court order issued this week mandatesing the center for medical progress turn over more misleading and fraudulent documentation. this hearing's only purpose is to smear a health care provider that serves millions of women a year, a provider that enjoys a higher approval rating among the american people than i would guess any member in this body enjoys. now as this committee contemplates the medical ethics
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of women's reproductive freedoms, what are in medical ethsices of not holding any hearings on a gun violence epidemic that claims the lives of 30,000 americans every year? what are the medical ethics of not holding a hearing on the 12,000 homicides and accidental gun deaths and 18,000 gun deaths by suicide every year and what are the medical ethics of states trying to ban pediatricians from discussing basic gun safety measures with parents. we've held zero hearings on a gun epidemic that claims american lives every dey. an average of 88 americans die every day of guns. nor has it held a hearing on the mass shootings. not after tucson. not after aurora. not after newtown. not after santa barbara and none scheduled after roseburg. and not after any more of the 200 that have occurred in 2015
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alone. october is domestic violence awareness month. in 2013 alone more than 1600 women were murdered by men and 94% of them were gun deaths. while this committee continues its redundant attacks over women's health it ignores the reality that every day american women are murdered due to domestic gun violence. yet as congress works to ensure that women face even more humiliating obstacles to safe and legal abortion access, the u.s. congress stands idly by as violent offenders are able to skirt background checks and get guns to commit horrific crimes. the american people are rightly frustrated with congress for failing to take any action, even the most basic action of closing the gun show loophole in the aftermaths of so much devastation. there are dozens of bills that deserve hearings in this committee of their jurisdiction. this one. the judiciary committee. i don't have time to name them all. there's a bipartisan public
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safety and second amendment protection act introduced by congressman thompson and king that would close gun sale loopholes with comprehensive background checks. congressman quigley's trace act that will empower law enforcement to stop the flow of guns to our streets by traffic whoerss make a living sells'ing guns to criminals. there's congresswoman maloney's bill. there's my own legislation, the safe and responsible firearms transfers act to prevent guns from being sold without background checks. not one of those bills has been the subject of a hearing from this committee, mr. chairman. not even a hearing where the majority can bring in witnesses to tell us why bipartisan proposals supported overwhelmingly by the american people and gun owners are somehow too extreme. there's not been a single hearing in 114th congress on any common sense improvements to our gun laws. the american people are frustrated with congress for failing to act on gun violence. the time for silence on this
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issue is over. at the beginning of the hearing today, one of my colleagues talked about the self-imposed blindness. self-imposed blindness. that's the self-imposed blindness that congress has to gun violence. he said that the humanity of the victims he hopes become so glaring that it moves an entire generation of the american people. i can only hope that the humanity of the victims of the thousands, tens of thousands of lives lost to gun violence might move this congress to finally take action. i yield back. >> the chairman yields back. chair recognizes the gentleman from idaho for five minutes. would he gentleman yield to me briefly? >> i'd like to say that there are right now on the books hundreds of federal gun control laws and regulations. and yet in the last six years,
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the enforcement, the prosecution for violations of all those laws are down by 30%. it seems to me that an administration that's led by an individual who calls for more laws every time we have one of these tragedies ought to go look in the mirror and -- >> will you yield? >> i will not yield. >> perhaps we can have a hearing on that. >> it's a problem that can be addressed with the laws that exist now. there are, by the organization that is the actual subject of this hearing today, 350,000 plus or minus abortions conducted by this organization every year. nearly 1,000 -- nearly 1,000 a day. and that's why we're here focused on this hearing today to make sure we're aware of whether more laws are needed to protect the


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