In a huge victory for the pro-life movement, the Trump administration announced today that it is ending the federal government's contracts with the University of California, San Francisco, over the lab's use of tissue from electively aborted babies.
Fox News reports that the Department of Health and Human Services announced the contract's end Wednesday after a six-month investigation into the university's practices. The investigation was part of a much larger HHS audit looking into research across the board to determine if taxpayers were funding researchers using aborted embryos or fetal tissue.
"Senior administration officials told Fox News on Wednesday that as a result of the review, HHS now will be notifying the University of California, San Francisco that another contract involving research using fetuses from elective abortions will not be renewed," Fox News reports.
The ban affects only research being done at labs sponsored by the National Institute of Health and doesn't affect private funding. If the University of California, San Francisco, wishes to continue doing its experiments, it will simply have to seek out private resources, rather than rely on government grants.
A Trump administration official also told Fox News that universities are free to explore using sources of fetal tissue other than aborted fetuses. The Trump administration's agenda is to protect taxpayers, essentially, from funding the purchase of aborted baby parts.
“It fits inside the wider context of the president’s pro-life agenda since he was sworn into office, So you’ve seen a consistent pattern of pro-life-focused decisions and policy decisions from the president over the last two and a half years,” the official told Fox. “This is consistent with that direction and there will be continued work on the pro-life agenda throughout the rest of the first term and the second term as well, and so we will always work to err on the side of life in all critical decisions that come to the Oval Office at the president’s direction."
The investigation was spurred on by a series of undercover investigations from several years ago that revealed that Planned Parenthood officials regularly transacted with medical and laboratory supply companies to sell fetal tissue obtained during the abortions Planned Parenthood provides. Although the abortion provider went to great lengths to claim the videos were "doctored" and "inaccurate," the courts ultimately disagreed.
Abortion proponents immediately began a campaign to "save" research using fetal tissue, claiming that the use of aborted babies in a scientific setting is highly regulated, and that experimentation could yield results that rid the world of disease.
Pro-lifers, on the other hand, heralded the decision.
“This is a major pro-life victory and we thank President Trump for taking decisive action. It is outrageous and disgusting that we have been complicit, through our taxpayer dollars, in the experimentation using baby body parts. NIH has spent $120 million a year on grisly, unethical experiments involving the hearts, livers, bones, and brains harvested from babies too young and vulnerable to speak for themselves,” SBA List President Marjorie Dannenfelser told the Daily Wire in a statement.
“President Trump knows we can do better as a nation and we are encouraged to see NIH Director Francis Collins carry out the President’s pro-life commitment. Taxpayer funding is better spent promoting alternatives that are already being used in the production of treatments, vaccines and medicines and to expand approaches that do not depend on the destruction of unborn children often through late-term abortion.”