WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Democratic-controlled House Thursday passed a bill bolstering embryonic stem cell research that advocates say shows promise for numerous medical cures.
Scientists still say, however, that embryonic stem cells so far are backed by the most promising evidence that one day they might be used to grow replacements for damaged tissue, such as new insulin-producing cells for diabetics or new nerve connections to restore movement after spinal injury.
The legislation would lift Bush's 2001 ban on federal dollars spent on deriving new stem cells from fertilized embryos. Bush's veto of the bill last year was the first veto of his presidency.
Embryonic stem cells are able to morph into any of the more than 220 cell types that make up the human body. Bush on August 9, 2001, restricted government funding to research using only the embryonic stem cell lines then in existence, groups of stem cells kept alive and propagating in lab dishes.
But those 21 stem cell lines have many problems, and researchers say 300 newer lines, culled from fertility clinic leftovers otherwise destined to be thrown away, are considered better suited for implantation into sick Americans.
So, stem cells could save lives... lives of human beings who are already, you know, alive. Sounds like a great idea, right? Well, not to Mike Rogers. He voted NO on H.R. 3 today.
Mr. Rogers consistently gets perfect marks from the National Right to Life committee, which opposes embryonic stem cell research, so it's not a big shock that he would vote against such a bill.
Of course, Mike Rogers wasn't elected to congress to represent the National Right to Life committee, he was elected to represent voters in the 8th district.
National polls have consistently shown strong public support for stem cell research (as high as 74%), so it's a safe bet that there is similar support here in the 8th district. Once again, Mike Rogers has proved that he doesn't represent the values of his constituents.