By Samantha Kamman, Abortion Columnist
After exposing a series of illegal activities taking place through the nation’s largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood, journalists David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt of the Center for Medical Progress are facing legal consequences. Daleiden and Merritt worked undercover, speaking with members of Planned Parenthood’s abortion industry while posing as members of a fake fetal tissue harvesting company. Through their work, it was discovered that Planned Parenthood partners with fetal body parts procurement agencies, regularly altering abortion procedures to obtain more fetal body parts for these agencies. Despite catching Planned Parenthood in violation of the law, Daleiden and Merritt have been subject to criminal charges, and a recent request to halt criminal prosecution against them has been denied.
For their undercover journalism, Daleiden and Merritt were hit with 15 felony charges in March 2017. The Los Angeles Times was critical of this, decrying the excessive charges against the two journalists as a “disturbing overreach.” Peter Breen, the Vice President and Senior Counsel of the Thomas More Society was also critical of the decision to prosecute Daleiden and Merritt.
“This decision to deny David Daleiden’s Petition for Review means that [California Attorney General] Xavier Becerra, as Planned Parenthood’s prosecutor-in-chief, will be able to continue his unconstitutional harassment of David, bringing charges against him that don’t pass the ‘red face test.”
AG Becerra assumed the position in place of presidential candidate Kamala Harris. Becerra is a supporter of the organization, and he has publicly stated he will “stand with Planned Parenthood.” Despite evidence detailing the clear conflict of interest involved in the case, the California Supreme Court is still allowing Becerra to prosecute. Though a federal appellate court ruled the journalists’ videos were not deceptively edited, Becerra will argue that Daleiden and Merritt should stand trial on fifteen felony charges related to their undercover videos.