House GOP Takes Issue With Planned Parenthood Chief Cecile Richards' Salary

Cecile Richards testified today before a House committee.

Richards made $590,928 in fiscal year 2013, lawmakers noted.

House Oversight Committee Chairman Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, made note that Richards' salary increased over a four-year period.

"Your compensation in 2009 was $353,000," Chaffetz said to Richards. "Congratulations. In 2013, your compensation went up some $240,000. Your compensation, we're showing based on tax returns, is $590,000."

But that line of inquiry appeared to backfire with committee Democrats, who criticized Chaffetz for selectively highlighting one organization president's salary.

"How dare you! Who do you think you are?" Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Virginia, asked sarcastically in reaction to Chaffetz and others who brought up Richards' compensation. "Making a professional salary as the head of a premier national organization, and daring to actually make decisions, as the head of that organization."

Today's hearing was the latest episode of what Republicans have promised would be a sustained campaign to investigate the organization and its practices.

In her testimony to the committee today, Richards calls Daleiden's and his colleagues' actions "outrageous."

"They sought to infiltrate Planned Parenthood affiliates and tried unsuccessfully to entrap Planned Parenthood physicians and staff for nearly three years. It is clear they acted fraudulently and unethically -- and perhaps illegally. Yet it is Planned Parenthood, not Mr. Daleiden, that is currently subject to four separate congressional investigations."

Richards also noted that the organization serves 2.7 million women across the country. Planned Parenthood also contends that only 3 percent of its overall services go to abortions.