You might’ve seen a hidden video circulating social media purporting to show a Planned Parenthood official describing how the organization sells body parts from aborted fetuses. The official goes on to describe in detail how abortions are performed in order to preserve the desired organs. While eating salad and drinking red white, she appears to say that organs sell for anywhere from $30-$100.
Of course, the video is absolutely a fraud. Like many similar “gotcha!” videos, such as previous fraudulent attempts to frame Planned Parenthood or ACORN, this video is selectively edited and presented in a way that both scrambles with the official is saying while also editing around what could be exculpatory remarks.
Furthermore, as Charles Johnson from Little Green Footballs pointed out, in what universe are human body parts sold for $30-$100? Perhaps Planned Parenthood is the Dollar Store of fetus organ trafficking, but I doubt it. It turns out that what the official was describing was a standard and very legal process of donating remains to biomedical firms for research. The $30-$100 the official quoted was the cost of the travel and expense reimbursements given to Planned Parenthood workers who transport the specimens. In a statement, Planned Parenthood confirmed:
In some instances, actual costs, such as the cost to transport tissue to leading research centers, are reimbursed, which is standard across the medical field.
The video goes on to show what’s reportedly an online Planned Parenthood order form for fetus body parts. It’s not. It’s from a firm called “Stem Express.” Little Green Footballs reprinted the following from the organization’s “About” page:
StemExpress is a multi-million dollar company that supplies human blood, tissue products, primary cells and other clinical specimens to biomedical researchers around the world to fuel regenerative medicine and translational research. Founded in 2010, we offer the largest variety of raw material in the industry, as well as fresh, fixed and cryopreserved human primary cells.
The creator of the video, by the way, is a group called Center for Medical Progress, run by a guy named David Daleiden, who happens to be friends with video con-artist James O’Keefe.
None of this matters, ultimately, because we can absolutely expect far-right members of Congress to use this as a cudgel to pass more laws against Planned Parenthood and other abortion-service providers. As for the official in the video, her life is all but ruined now. If she isn’t already, she’ll be the target of every anti-abortion extremist lurking in the shadows of the political discourse. And she didn’t do anything wrong.