Republican lawmakers have been doggedly focused on Planned Parenthood for months, hoping to catch the national women’s health organization breaking laws related to fetal tissue donation. This crusade has taken a particularly aggressive turn in Missouri — where state senators are threatening to throw the head of St. Louis’ Planned Parenthood affiliate in jail.

The senators are trying to hold the Planned Parenthood employee in contempt of court — because the clinic has refused turn over a broad swath of private medical documents, which the organization says would have violated federal privacy laws.

The contempt charge is related to a November subpoena issued to Mary Kogut, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri, by the interim Missouri State Senate Committee on the Sanctity of Life. The committee was convened to investigate allegations that the women’s health organization illegally sells fetal remains, made by the Center for Medical Progress’ widely-debunked sting videos.

Among the requested documents are all consent forms signed by patients as part of receiving abortion care or prior to being administered anesthesia since 2010. As the clinic is the only remaining abortion provider in the state, this would effectively give lawmakers the names of the bulk of the women in Missouri who’ve received abortions in recent years, other than a small number of procedures performed at hospitals. Crucially, the committee’s document request makes no specifications about what would happen with the information after it is turned over, so there is no guarantee that the information could not be turned over to the public.

Planned Parenthood’s lawyers contend that the committee lacks the authority to subpoena the documents — many of which contain information protected by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) — and that turning them would be a breach of doctor-patient confidentiality and federal privacy laws.

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SEE ALSO: Clinton Calls Out Debate Moderators For Never Asking About Abortion Rights

EXCERPT: “We’ve not had one question about a woman’s right to make her own decisions about reproductive health care, not one question,” Clinton said. “And in the meantime we have states, governors doing everything they can to restrict women’s rights. We have a presidential candidate by the name of Donald Trump saying that women should be punished and we are never asked about this.”

...... the topic has not made it into any of the nine official Democratic debates. As Clinton mentioned, many Republican-controlled state legislatures and Republican governors have moved in recent months to strip funding from women’s health organizations like Planned Parenthood, as haveRepublicans in the U.S. Congress.

“It goes to the heart of who we are as women, our rights, our autonomy, our ability to make our own decisions, and we need to be talking about that and defending Planned Parenthood from these outrageous attacks,” added Clinton.

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