By Maria V. Gallagher, Legislative Director, Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation
A panel discussion in southwestern Pennsylvania this week shined a spotlight on gruesome allegations regarding research at the University of Pittsburgh.
Panelist David Daleiden of the Center for Medical Progress indicated the university’s decision to hire a law firm to probe the situation was inadequate. “That’s not an investigation. It’s hiring a law firm.” Daleiden went on to allege, “It looks like an obvious cover-up.”
Pitt has sparked controversy for experiments using aborted baby body parts. Thousands of people signed a petition from the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation, calling on the university to halt the practice.
In the most troubling allegations, the Center for Medical Progress and Judicial Watch have accused the university of allegedly harvesting body parts from babies whose hearts are still beating. If true, that would be a clear violation of Pennsylvania’s long-standing Abortion Control Act.
Meanwhile, panelist Joseph Meaney of the National Catholic Bioethics Center characterized the allegations this way: “You don’t know where to start in terms of ethics violations.”
More than 100 members of Congress and the U.S. Senate have sent a letter to federal officials, demanding additional information about the experiments, which were paid for with federal tax dollars. As of this writing, the federal lawmakers are still awaiting a response from the Departments of Justice and Health & Human Services and the National Institutes of Health.
During Tuesday’s panel discussion, state Rep. Tim Bonner, a Republican from southwestern Pennsylvania, said that meetings are going on now in the Pennsylvania state legislature in an attempt to obtain additional information from Pitt.
In a series of undercover videos, the Center for Medical Progress revealed that Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion operation, supplies parts from aborted babies to Pitt for its experiments. But published reports indicate the university has denied a “tissue procurement” relationship with Planned Parenthood.