Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) ordered a ban on the "sale" of fetal tissue from abortions Monday, The Arizona Republic reported.
Ducey's ban came in response to an anti-abortion video that surfaced last week that purported to show a Planned Parenthood official discussing how abortion clinics profited from providing fetal tissue from abortions to scientific researchers. Planned Parenthood, while acknowledging its affiliates do participate in tissue donation programs, has denied the allegations that fetal tissue is being sold for profit, which is already against the law. Planned Parenthood contends that clinics only charge what is required to offset the cost of providing tissue to researchers.
"The footage released by The Center for Medical Progress regarding the alleged sale and trafficking of aborted fetal tissue and body parts by Planned Parenthood is horrifying and has no place in a civilized society," Ducey said in a statement Monday. "I am calling on the Department of Health Services to conduct a thorough review of the law and immediately promulgate emergency rules designed to prohibit the illegal sale of any tissue from an unborn child.”
The Center for Medical Progress, the group that published the undercover video of Planned Parenthood senior director of medical research Deborah Nucatola discussing the procurement of tissue for researchers, is believed to have ties to the anti-abortion movement. In the video, Nucatola, over lunch and red wine, appears to tell two actors posing as representatives from a biologics company how transactions between abortion providers and scientific researchers for fetal tissue typically work, at times going into graphic detail of how coveted tissues are salvaged from aborted fetuses. Planned Parenthood Federation of America president Cecile Richards apologized for Nucatola's "tone" in the video, but the organization said that video was heavily edited and that the practices Nucatola describes are within the legal and industry norms.
Two panels in the U.S. House of Representatives have opened investigations into the allegations The Center for Medical Progress raised with the video, as have a number of states.