MIRS News Service is reporting this week that the Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) and Health and Human Services (DHHS) issued a joint statement clearing Planned Parenthood affiliates in Michigan of any illegal activities related to donations of fetal tissue. The two agencies have been investigating Planned Parenthood after Republican Senator Phil Pavlov called for the investigation in the wake of the deceptively-edited videos that attempt to show the healthcare provider selling fetal body parts for a profit. You can read Sen. Pavlov’s letter to LARA and DHHS HERE.
The investigation was completely unwarranted because Planned Parenthood in Michigan does not participate in the fetal tissue donation program – a LEGAL program, it should be noted – that other state affiliates are involved in. When Sen. Pavlov demanded the investigation by the two state agencies, Desiree Cooper, Director of Community and Media Relations for Planned Parenthood Mid and South Michigan, issued a statement saying, “State Sen. Phil Pavlov’s call for an investigation of Planned Parenthood is unwarranted as our organization does not offer patients the opportunity to donate fetal tissue.”
Nonetheless, Republicans felt it was a good use of our state tax dollars to conduct the unnecessary investigation.
According to MIRS, LARA and DHHS issued a statement this week announcing that they had “thoroughly reviewed our regulatory oversight regarding the investigations and inspections of licensed facilities and individuals” and found “no evidence to date that illegal practices are occurring.”
So that, along with the fact that Michigan Planned Parenthood isn’t actually involved in fetal tissue donation in any way, should be the end of the story, right? No more need waste our tax dollars in this witch hunt? We can move on to more important problems that actually exist?
Republican Sen. Peter MacGregor, the head of the Senate Oversight Committee, said he’s made it his “personal objective is to make sure what has…allegedly happened in California isn’t or can’t or won’t happen in the state of Michigan…basically the selling of the fetal body parts.” And he plans to move forward with his committee’s own investigation of Planned Parenthood.
Don’t ever let anyone try to convince you that Republicans are about saving taxpayer dollars by helping government run more efficiently. What we have in this case are two Republican Senators who are wasting tax dollars to pursue a personal political agenda, an ideologically far-right crusade in order to destroy Planned Parenthood. There is, simply put, no other way to characterize this. There literally IS nothing to see here and we CAN move along.