John Boehner Appoints GOP House Members to Select Panel Investigating Planned Parenthood

Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/AP
Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/AP

House Speaker John Boehner announced Friday the names of the Republican members of the House who have been appointed to the newly created Select Investigative Panel, which will address the recent Planned Parenthood scandal as exposed in a series of undercover videos.

“Recent videos exposing the abortion-for-baby parts business have shocked the nation, and demanded action,” Boehner said in a statement. “At my request, three House committees have been investigating the abortion business, but we still don’t have the full truth.”

The Select Investigative Panel is part of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Republicans appointed to the panel are:

Rep. Marsha Blackburn, chairman

Rep. Joe Pitts

Rep. Diane Black

Rep. Larry Bucshon

Rep. Sean Duffy

Rep. Andy Harris

Rep. Vicky Hartzler

Rep. Mia Love

“Chairman Blackburn and our members will have the resources and the subpoena power to get to the bottom of these horrific practices, and build on our work to protect the sanctity of all human life,” Boehner said.

Rep. Diane Black–who has been a nurse for more than 40 years–said in a statement, “I am grateful for the opportunity to bring my healthcare expertise to the critical work of this panel.”

She added:

It is no secret that I am passionately pro-life and have long opposed the federal funding of Planned Parenthood, but every American deserves to know that our laws are followed and that taxpayer dollars are spent with integrity. This panel will help ensure that is the case. We will be relentless in the pursuit of the facts, we will bring the truth out into the light of day, and we will hold responsible parties accountable.

“This panel has an obligation to taxpayers to conduct a thorough investigation that produces real answers,” Black said. “I am ready to get to work.”

Black is the author of a bill to defund Planned Parenthood and redirect those taxpayer funds to qualified healthcare centers that do not perform abortions.

During the House Oversight Committee’s hearing on September 29, Black questioned Cecile Richards, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood, who affirmed during her testimony, “Abortion is healthcare.”

“As a nurse, I will challenge that every time,” Black replied.

Father Frank Pavone, national director of Priests for Life and author of Abolishing Abortion, welcomed the announcement from Boehner’s office about the appointees.

“I have sent a letter to each of the newly appointed members of this committee,” said Pavone in a statement sent to Breitbart News, “pledging the full collaboration of Priests for Life. We have been investigating the abortion industry since the early 1990s, and can be of assistance to this effort.”

“As my new book explains, you cannot practice vice virtuously,” he added. “Those who get paid to kill children are doing a lot of other immoral–as well as illegal–activities, as well. A key step in ending abortion is to expose the corruption of the abortion industry. This new congressional panel will be another step in making that happen.”

Several congressional committees have been investigating Planned Parenthood since the videos, produced by The Center for Medical Progress, have revealed the abortion business’ apparent practice of harvesting the body parts of aborted babies for sale on the open market.

Boehner denounced the activities as seen in the videos and urged President Obama to speak out against the practices.


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