More than 11,000 people participated in a pro-life webcast event saluting the work of David Daleiden, executive director of the Center for Medical Progress (CMP), for his efforts to expose Planned Parenthood’s practices of harvesting the body parts of aborted babies and sell them on the open market.
Stop Baby Parts Trafficking was hosted by David Bereit, national director of 40 Days for Life, and featured discussion by Daleiden, a 26 year-old citizen journalist, about his 30-month long investigation of Planned Parenthood.
Regarding his motivation for the investigation, Daleiden said it had been 15 years since any organization had focused on the issue of harvesting aborted baby parts. Despite the exposure in the past, however, he said nobody made Planned Parenthood own the reality that it harvests baby parts and, consequently, the organization was able to get away with it.
Daleiden shared what he views as the three most shocking revelations that have come from his videos:
- Planned Parenthood sells the body parts of the babies it aborts and makes money on it, which is against the law.
- Planned Parenthood changes the abortion procedure to get higher quality aborted baby body parts to sell. The videos reveal that the abortion business sometimes uses the partial birth abortion procedure to harvest the body parts.
- The activity seen in the videos goes up to the highest levels of Planned Parenthood, and these top executives support and approve of the activity and cover it up.
Daleiden said that perhaps the most important change that has come about as a result of this investigative work is that “the out-of-sight, out-of-mind mantra that has propelled the abortion industry is now forever gone.”
“When you have top-level Planned Parenthood executives speaking so openly about the brutality of their work, you can’t cover up the violence of their work any longer,” he explained, adding that the destruction and violent death of a small person is right there and can’t be denied any longer.
Daleiden continued that the videos are holding people to account and allowing congressional committees to proceed with investigations with openness and honesty.
In a letter to members of Congress, Daleiden observed, Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards admitted not only that her organization does sell the body parts of aborted babies – receiving about $60 per body part specimen – but also that Planned Parenthood may alter its abortion procedures to obtain higher quality body parts.
CMP’s executive director said Richards’ not only admitted these things, but also did not back down from them.
In congratulating Daleiden for his work, Bereit said CMP’s efforts have led to “Planned Parenthood’s brand taking a beating.”
“People are seeing what the abortion world is really about,” he said, noting that major corporations and companies have now run from their prior associations with Planned Parenthood, and that nearly every presidential contender has mentioned the Planned Parenthood scandal.
Bereit said he has seen more people become increasingly active about their pro-life commitments as a result of the CMP videos, and asserted that “almost singlehandedly they have reignited the abortion debate,” placing Planned Parenthood on the verge of defeat.
Two pro-bono legal foundations are representing Daleiden against the National Abortion Federation (NAF) and biomedical company and Planned Parenthood partner StemExpress, whose founder and CEO Cate Dyer is featured in a couple of the videos discussing procurement procedures for aborted baby body parts.
Katie Short, vice president for legal affairs of the Life Legal Defense Foundation, which is representing Daleiden in the lawsuit filed by StemExpress, told webcast participants that Planned Parenthood is running scared now.
Daleiden’s revelations, Short said, show “something never seen before in the pro-life movement.” She described Planned Parenthood’s response as “shooting the messenger,” meaning the organization is working hard to discredit him and CMP.
“It’s never good for the abortion industry when the details of abortion are discussed,” Short continued, observing that Planned Parenthood’s method is to distance itself from abortion, manipulating statistics so it appears only three percent of its work is abortion when the organization is actually the largest provider of abortions in the country.
“David is an amazing young man, always careful to obey the law, and always thinks through the issues carefully,” Short said. “He has done an incredible service to the pro-life movement.”
Tom Brejcha, president and chief counsel of the Thomas More Society, also represents Daleiden in the lawsuit filed against him by NAF, the abortion industry’s trade group.
Planned Parenthood, Brejcha observed, has not sued anyone yet since the videos have been released. “They’re leaving that to NAF, which is represented by a huge corporate law firm – Morrison and Foerster – that hopes to silence David Daleiden.”
“The impact of David’s work is tremendous,” Brejcha said, citing the multiple congressional committees as well as state attorneys general seeking the videos’ detailed evidence of these serious crimes.
Brejcha said the case also holds “precious First Amendment value,” and that the NAF is pursuing its goals in a nasty way by demeaning Daleiden’s work – referring to it as a “crime spree” in order to divert attention away from the content of the videos.
“Federal law is clearly designed to prohibit the sale of aborted baby body parts,” he added. “We will prevail.”
Brejcha pointed out, however, that the challenges to the case are many, considering that the Obama administration, the Department of Justice, and the California Attorney General “are not friends to the pro-life movement.”
More attorneys and expert witnesses with scientific credentials are needed to defend against the claims made against Daleiden and CMP, the attorney said. Bereit observed that a legal defense fund has also been set up to support this effort.
“The pro-life movement is blessed to have David Daleiden,” Brejcha said. “This is the young generation of pro-life people. It’s inspiring to see their commitment and intelligence.”
Finally, Daleiden said he believes the videos he and CMP have produced have the effect of “holding up a mirror to America and asking us, ‘Is this who we want to be?’”