Center for Medical Progress founder David Daleiden made news—and not the kind of news he wanted—yesterday when a Texas grand jury investigating his claims against Planned Parenthood instead chose to indict him for using a fake ID and attempting to buy fetal tissue.  While he may end up a felon in Texas, he still has possible federal charges to worry about.

CREW filed a complaint last year with the IRS asserting that Daleiden’s CMP falsely presented themselves to the IRS on their tax forms when applying for tax-exempt status, which seems to be a pattern for them.

Not unlike they did with their fake IDs in Texas, CMP created a fake website that the organization presented to the IRS.  The fake website contained nothing about Planned Parenthood or abortion, instead included almost two dozen posts on regenerative medicine and therapies, with titles such as “‘Transdifferentiation’: Bone Marrow to Neural Progenitor,” which discussed a scientific discovery that was “noteworthy not only because it is a stunning application of direct lineage conversion, but also because it was achieved through the introduction of just one trigger.”  While CMP updated this site, the group was busy making anti-Planned Parenthood films.

On its tax-exempt application, CMP indicated that its purpose was developing educational materials about “medical advances, such as stem cell research, and other bioethical issues,” even though CMP founders have made clear in interviews that their core purpose from the organization’s inception was to go after Planned Parenthood.  CMP also represented in its application that it would not attempt to influence legislation, which is a far cry for the group’s true actions, which have included trying to get congress to pass legislation defunding Planned Parenthood.

Finally, CMP’s principal players hid their personal identities from the IRS.  The board is made up of three professional anti-abortion activists—titles they do not shy from—Daleiden, Troy Newman and Albin Rhomberg.  However, there is no mention of abortion or activism in their profiles in the CMP application, which instead includes descriptions like “Troy Newman has over two decades of experience in monitoring medical professional compliance with local and state regulations and advocacy for healthcare consumers.”  His profile on his own website (Operation Rescue, “one of the leading pro-life Christian activist organizations in the nation”) describes CMP as a pro-life group.  It does not mention anything about “monitoring medical professional compliance.”

Daleiden and the Center for Medical Progress misled Planned Parenthood with their fake IDs and false presentation, misled the American people with their dubiously edited videos and misled the IRS with knowingly false information on their tax forms.  It’s a good first step that Texas decided to take action and indict them.  We hope the federal government is next.

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