AP FACT CHECK: Claims from the Republican debate

AP.org By Robert Burns and Calvin Woodward 1/15/16 WASHINGTON (AP) — Did Ted Cruz mean to suggest he would have gone to war with Iran over its brief detention of U.S. sailors? Did Donald Trump forget that he proposed a massive tax on Chinese goods? And does Ben Carson really think Islamic State militants chill out with a cigar? In their rush to slam the Obama administration, play up their records and play down inconvenient realities, Republican presidential candidates served up some misshapen rhetoric in their latest presidential debate (on … Continue reading

The 21 craziest quotes from the campaign trail

Politico.com By Nick Gass 11/25/15 And they’re not all from Donald Trump. 1. ‘I would bomb the sh– out of them’ Trump has made no effort to tone down his fiery rhetoric when it comes to fighting the Islamic State, remarking a day before deadly terrorist attacks in France just how far he would go to defeat the group. “ISIS is making a tremendous amount of money because of the oil that they took away, they have some in Syria, they have some in Iraq, I would bomb the sh– … Continue reading

Planned Parenthood’s Leader Pushes Back Against G.O.P. Critics

The New York Times By Michael D. Shear 9/29/15 WASHINGTON — The embattled president of Planned Parenthood on Tuesday forcefully disputed what she called “outrageous accusations” by Republicans that her organization profits from the sale of fetal tissue, telling Congress that the charges were “offensive and categorically untrue.” In testimony before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, the president, Cecile Richards, faced off against conservative lawmakers who are seeking to strip federal funding from Planned Parenthood after videos released by anti-abortion activists purported to show officials from the health group … Continue reading

Amid revolt, Boehner steps aside to avoid ‘irreparable harm’ to Congress

IndyStar.com By Deirdre Shesgreen, USAToday 9/25/15 WASHINGTON — It took a visit from the pope, a brewing conservative rebellion, and a good night’s sleep for John Boehner — the son of a bartender and a devout Catholic from Cincinnati — to decide that Friday morning was the right moment for him to end his tumultuous five-year speakership and bring his 25-year career in Congress to a close. “This morning, I woke up and I said my prayers and I decided today’s the day I’m going to this,” Boehner told reporters in an … Continue reading

House, Senate leaders still lack plan to avoid shutdown

The only thing clear two weeks from the deadline is it will go down to the wire. Politico.com By Jake Sherman and Anna Palmer 9/17/15 The same Republicans who campaigned on doing away with legislative crises are careening toward government shutdown in less than two weeks with still no concrete plan to stop it. It’s not that Speaker John Boehner’s (R-Ohio) leadership team is hiding their best hand. They have no trick up their sleeve, no ace in the hole — pick your cliché. Nearly everyone in House and Senate … Continue reading

House GOP leaders desperate to avoid shutdown

(Information about the Freedom Caucus – mentioned below – as well as a list of members including Indiana’s Rep. Marlin Stutzman will be found here.) With the clock ticking, Republicans have yet to settle on a strategy to resolve a showdown over Planned Parenthood funding. Politico.com By Jake Sherman and Anna Palmer 8/25/15 An explosive confrontation brewing between the House Republican leadership and conservatives over Planned Parenthood is threatening to shut down the government for the second time in three years. And House GOP leaders have yet to settle on … Continue reading

U.S. Department of Health & Human Services to Congress: No violations of fetal tissue laws

HHS to Congress: No violations of fetal tissue laws

Politico.com
By Jennifer Haberkorn
8/16/15

The Obama administration says there are no known violations of the country’s fetal tissue laws among government researchers or the companies that supply the tissue.

“Currently, we know of no violation of these laws in connection with the research done at our agencies,” Jim Esquea, assistant secretary for legislation at HHS, wrote in a letter to Sens. Joni Ernst and Roy Blunt, obtained by POLITICO. “Furthermore … we have confirmed that HHS researchers working with fetal tissue obtained the tissue from non-profit organizations that provided assurances to us that they are in compliance with all applicable legal requirements.

Very little federal research is done with fetal tissue, but it has come under scrutiny since an anti-abortion group earlier this summer began releasing undercover videos alleging that Planned Parenthood was trafficking in fetal tissue and organs. Planned Parenthood has denied that, saying it facilitates legal tissue donation at a few of its locations.

HHS has gotten re-affirmations from government researchers and government-funded researchers that their tissue procurement is done in accordance with the tissue laws. And it got assurances from the companies that provide that fetal tissue to researchers at NIH and FDA that they are obtaining the fetal tissue and organs in compliance with federal laws, the letter says.

HHS also said that research with fetal tissue conducted by NIH accounts for less than 0.1 percent of its total research budget. It didn’t provide whole numbers.

The letter was sent to Congress late Friday evening.

Ben Carson’s perplexing stance on abortion

The retired neurosurgeon says he’s fiercely pro-life. His record (and his own comments) don’t back that up. Politico.com By Katie Glueck 8/18/15 Ben Carson’s presidential campaign is surging on a wave of support from socially conservative voters inspired by his passionate talk about faith and his attacks on Planned Parenthood. But while Carson insists he’s a fierce opponent of abortion, he also defends a long series of actions on the issue that are sharply at odds with the beliefs of the very voters fueling his rise. Carson, a retired pediatric … Continue reading

Ben Carson: No apologies for 1992 fetal tissue research

The Washington Post By David Weigel 8/13/15 This story has been updated. Ben Carson defended the use of fetal tissue for medical research Thursday, after a blog published excerpts of a 1992 paper describing work the neurosurgeon-turned-presidential candidate carried out using aborted fetuses. In an interview with The Washington Post, Carson called the revelation “desperate,” and ignorant of the way medical research was carried out. “You have to look at the intent,” Carson said before beginning a campaign swing through New Hampshire. “To willfully ignore evidence that you have for some ideological … Continue reading