11 Apr Doyle joins governors in support of stem cell bill
Madison, Wis. – Calling President Bush severely out of touch, Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle has joined nine other governors in calling for passage of a bill to lift federal restrictions on embryonic stem cell research.
The pending legislation, Senate Bill 5 – the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act of 2007 – is being debated in the Senate. It would end restrictions on additional federal funding imposed by Bush in 2001.
Doyle urged passage of the bill in a letter to senators. “President Bush’s restrictions have delayed that research for far too long,” Doyle said. “Once again, Congress has a critical responsibility this week to do the right thing so that scientists can unlock cures to diseases we have long thought to be incurable.”
Bush vetoed a similar bill last year, when both the House of Representatives and the Senate were controlled by Republicans. This time, both the House and the Senate are controlled by Democrats, but advocates of the research still don’t appear to have the necessary votes to override a presidential veto in both houses.
Earlier this year, the House passed HR 3, the companion to Senate Bill 5.
Since embryos are destroyed in the process of extracting stem cells for research, Bush has cited moral reasons for restricting federal funding to embryonic stem cell lines that existed in August of 2001. He has authorized additional funding for research using adult stem cells.
A new finding related to the transplantation of stem cells derived from bone marrow as a possible treatment for juvenile diabetes could add more fuel to the debate. The procedure, which does not involve stem cells harvested from embryos, was outlined in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
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• Bush vetoes stem cell research bill
• Senate approves bill to expand stem cell funding