Ted Cruz delivered an impassioned speech on the Capitol Hill steps today in which he called for the defunding and investigation of Planned Parenthood. The video of Cruz’s full speech is below:
First, he addressed the turning point the videos represent in the debate over abortion:
These are videos of Planned Parenthood officials laughing, swilling chardonnay, and casually, callously, heartlessly bartering and selling body parts of unborn children. I would encourage every American to watch these videos. Regardless of your views on the right to life, even if you are a supporter of abortion, I would encourage you to watch these videos. And just ask a very simple question: Are these my values?
Cruz went on to call for a criminal investigation of Planned Parenthood, blasting the inaction by the Justice Department as unprecedented:
Today, the U.S. Department of Justice should open an investigation into all of those individuals. Today, the U.S. Department of Justice should open an investigation into whether Planned Parenthood nationally is a criminal enterprise breaking the law.[…]
The Department of Justice has had a long tradition over the centuries of fairly and impartially applying criminal law and enforcing criminal law regardless of partisan allegiance. How sad is it that almost no media observer thinks there’s any chance that the Department of Justice would investigate whether Planned Parenthood senior officials have violated federal law?
Today, the Obama Justice Department is operating as little more than a partisan arm of the Democratic National Committee. When you have multiple officials caught on tape apparently confessing to multiple felonies that carry with them long jail times, justice must be served. I call on the Department of Justice to enforce the criminal laws and investigate Planned Parenthood.
Cruz then took Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) to task for cancelling an amendment to defund Planned Parenthood on the highway bill, saying that the bill McConnell is fast tracking is a “show vote” that is less likely to succeed:
And let me be clear what we should demand. We should not demand an empty show vote, because one of the things leadership occasionally likes is to tee up a vote that is designed to fail, and then tap people on the head and say “you should be happy you got a vote.” Leadership knows how to fight when they’re fighting for corporate welfare. Leadership knows how to fight when they’re fighting for cronyism. Leadership knows how to fight when they’re fighting for more spending and debt and power in Washington. How about we see a fraction of the fight for the principles and values of the American people?
Nick Arnold is a researcher for American Principles in Action.