Planned Parenthood protest planned outside governor’s home on Wednesday

Published 9:12 am Tuesday, September 8, 2015

By Pat Pheifer

Minneapolis Star Tribune

ST. PAUL — The Minnesota Family Council plans to hold a protest outside the governor’s residence in St. Paul at 4 p.m. Wednesday, asking Gov. Mark Dayton to investigate Planned Parenthood and calling for legislators to defund the organization.

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The planned protest is part of a recent national wave of protest against the organization sparked by a controversy over its purported handling of fetal tissues, which Planned Parenthood says has been distorted.

Council president Tom Prichard could not immediately be reached for comment on Monday, but the “Firestorm” protest is being promoted at the MFC website, which urges “all prolife Minnesotans to call on Gov. Dayton to investigate & defund Planned Parenthood!”

Dayton supports abortion rights, and in 2012 vetoed two abortion bills, one that would have required that the state inspect abortion clinics and another that would have required that a doctor be present when Plan B or abortion pills are administered.

It was unclear Monday whether Dayton will be at the residence Wednesday.

About 700 to 800 people rallied in front of Planned Parenthood offices in St. Paul on Aug. 22 as part of a national day of protest against the organization over its alleged handling of fetal issue.

The Minnesota Family Council’s website, which states its stand on abortion and fetal tissue research, includes these words:

“Every human life is a gift from God and is created in the image and likeness of God. Therefore, human life is sacred and must be protected at all stages, from fertilization to natural death. … We oppose research that requires the destruction of a human embryo or that clones a human embryo.”

That protest was sparked by the release of videos that purported to show Planned Parenthood’s national medical director discussing the sale of fetal tissue to alleged medical researchers.

Planned Parenthood has argued that the videos were heavily edited and the conversation was taken out of context.

The organization’s local affiliate has stressed repeatedly that it has no fetal-tissue donation program.

—Distributed by Tribune Content Agency.