All Oversight Committee Democrats Object to Plan by Extreme Wing of Republican Party to Shut Down Government and Oust Speaker Using Planned Parenthood Hearing

Sep 21, 2015
Press Release

All Oversight Committee Democrats Object to Plan by Extreme Wing of Republican Party to Shut Down Government and Oust Speaker Using Planned Parenthood Hearing


Democrats Seek Testimony from CMP Head David Daleiden


Washington, D.C. (Sept. 21, 2015)—Today, all 18 Democratic Members of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform sent a detailed letter to Chairman Jason Chaffetz setting forth numerous objections to a hearing with Planned Parenthood scheduled for September 29—the day before Congress votes on a Continuing Resolution to keep the federal government open.

The Democrats wrote that “this appears to be part of a broader power struggle to unseat House Speaker John Boehner, led by an extreme wing of the Republican Party that is using this issue to force a government shutdown unless the Speaker bows to their demands.”

More than half of the founding members of the House Freedom Caucus are also Members of the Oversight Committee, including Rep. Mark Meadows, who introduced the resolution to unseat Speaker Boehner on July 28, two weeks after David Daleiden, the head of the Center for Medical Progress, publicly released the first of his secretly-recorded videos.

The next day, on July 29, Rep. Jim Jordan, the Chairman of the Freedom Caucus and also a Member of the Oversight Committee, joined 17 other Republicans in sending a letter to Boehner warning that they “will not support any funding resolution—an appropriations bill, an omnibus package, a continuing resolution or otherwise—that contains any funding for Planned Parenthood, including mandatory funding streams.” 

Chaffetz then teamed with Jordan to launch the Oversight Committee’s investigation, sending five letters together over the past month seeking documents and other materials.  Jordan stated previously that he and other conservatives are “fed up” with the current Republican leadership and that he founded the Freedom Caucus with the goal of “moving things in a conservative manner.” 

The Democrats also objected to the Republican plan to invite only Planned Parenthood, despite the fact that “the Committee has identified no credible evidence that Planned Parenthood engaged in illegal activity.”  If the Committee goes forward, the Democrats requested that “the Committee also investigate the actions of Mr. Daleiden and his organization, which—in contrast to Planned Parenthood—may have violated numerous state and federal laws in their clandestine effort to entrap Planned Parenthood.”

“We strongly oppose this biased, one-sided attack against Planned Parenthood that disregards the questionable activities of Mr. Daleiden merely to help the House Freedom Caucus shut down the government and potentially oust Speaker Boehner—all while jeopardizing healthcare services for millions of women across the country,” the Democrats wrote.  “We believe it is fundamentally unfair to hold a public hearing to essentially indict Planned Parenthood in the court of public opinion without hearing directly from their accuser, David Daleiden, who deceptively edited secretly-recorded videos in an ultimately unsuccessful three-year crusade to entrap Planned Parenthood.”

114th Congress