Obama even plans a ceremony to sign the order that will allow the use of taxpayer dollars to fund research that destroys human embryos:
Administration officials would not comment immediately other than to say “there will be a stem cell-related event on Monday.” But an e-mail sent out today from the White House stated that officials were planning a ceremony on Monday “on stem cells and restoring scientific integrity to the government process. At the event the president will sign an executive order related to stem cells.” Sources close to the issue, asking not to be named because they were not authorized to discuss the plan, said the order would lift the restrictions on federal funding of human embryonic stem cells.
The federal ban on funding stem cell research which results in the destruction of human embryos began under President Clinton when he signed the Dickey Amendment in 1995.
When President Bush took office there was no federal funding for human embryonic stem cell research. In August 9, 2001, Bush established a new policy on stem cell research. His policy was the first to make federal funds available human embryonic stem cell research. President Bush’s policy allowed federal funding of research using existing stem cell lines only, “where the decision on life and death has already been made”:
Bush said research using embryonic stem cells involved “great promise, and great peril.”
“We must proceed with great care,” Bush said.
The president said scientists have told him that research on the 60 existing stem cell lines “has great promise that could lead to breakthrough therapies and cures. This allows us to explore the promise and potential of stem cell research without crossing a fundamental moral line by providing taxpayer funding that would sanction or encourage further destruction of human embryos that have at least the potential for life.”
Bush also endorsed increased funding for research on stem cells obtained from adults, umbilical cords, placentas and animals.
Contrary to what you hear from those who conducted a despicable and relentless campaign to demonize and discredit President Bush, there is no ban on human embryonic stem cell research. The human embryonic stem cell lines authorized under Bush’s policy are used in federally funded research every day.
The issue here is only federal funding for embryonic stem cell research. Just as the federal government doesn’t fund abortions, it shouldn’t fund embryonic stem cell research which results in the destruction of human embryos. Simply because more of those polled say they want it than say they don’t, doesn’t make it right for the federal government to pay for research which requires the destruction of human embryos. There is nothing which restricts privately funded embryonic stem cell research.
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