Congress Is Considering Restrictions on Fetal Tissue Research. Here’s Why We Still Badly Need It. - Pacific Standard
In the summer of 2015, an anti-abortion group released a video showing Planned Parenthood officials discussing what they would charge to provide tissue samples from aborted fetuses for research. While there was nothing illegal about this, the video made the exchange look shady. It engendered outrage among anti-abortion activists, and prompted calls from congressional Republicans to defund Planned Parenthood.
Congress has yet to cut off federal payments to Planned Parenthood (payments which only cover non-abortion services), but the controversy over the use of fetal tissue in medical research has made its way into congressional negotiations over the federal budget. This month, the House approved a spending bill that bans the National Institutes of Health from funding any research that uses human fetal tissue obtained from abortions. A parallel Senate bill stops short of a ban, but it does order the NIH to study whether researchers really need fetal tissue from abortions.