Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Bush’s Ongoing War on Science

While the nation was focused on the filibuster issue, another important bill (probably far more important than Senate procedures)passed in the House. This was clearly a rebuke to the growing "culture of life" presence in the Congress. Between his conversations with God and the Danish Prime Minister, President Bush clearly stated that he chooses the medievalist worldview of the fundamentalist faction of the Republican Party.

“I have made very clear to the Congress that the use of taxpayer money to promote science that destroys life in order to save life, I am against that,'' Bush told reporters in at the White House before meeting with Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen. ``If the bill does that, I will veto it.''

Bush has yet to veto a bill. But, then, why would he? The rightwing fanatics who control Congress are hardly going to pass something he isn’t going to like. Still, the issue of stem cell research is a sticky one for the Republicans whose poll numbers are going south.

An NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll published May 19th showed that 65% of those questioned believe Congress does not share their values.

Last night, fifty Republicans split with party leaders to back the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act, written by Delaware Republican Mike Castle, after an emotional debate between advocates for such research into cures for debilitating diseases and those who believe use of the embryos is the unwarranted destruction of human life. Castle’s bill will remove the limit on the number of embryonic stem-cell lines eligible for federal research funding. The measure had 202 co-sponsors; passage required 218 votes. The 238-to-194 vote fell short of the 290 votes needed to override a veto.

The Gold Dust Twins of corrupt politicos, Speaker Dennis Hastert of Illinois and House Majority Leader Tom DeLay of Texas, both opposed Castle's bill, yet they agreed to allow a vote in part because public support is growing for expanded stem cell research. After the Terri Shiavo fiasco even “Tom the Hammer” is wary and apparently capable of reading the handwriting on the wall:

A poll released by Castle and other lawmakers last week found 66 percent of 1,300 voters in 13 Republican districts favored stem-cell research.

The danger for Republicans and opponents of embryonic stem cell research is a public backlash, Norm Ornstein, a congressional scholar at the American Enterprise Institute said.

``There are strong majorities of Americans out there who want embryonic stem cell research, and there is also evidence that the American people think Congress is out of touch,'' Ornstein said. ``This could turn into a case of, `There they go again.'''

Embryonic stem cells are like blank slates that have the potential to mature into any type of cell or tissue. Researchers say the cells, which scientists first began to isolate and grow in 1998, may lead one day to cures for conditions including spinal cord injuries, Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease, and diabetes.


At 10:55 AM, Blogger Wes said...

Do y'think it's just coincidence that everyone of the "snowflake babies" that was on stage with Bush was white?

To me, "embryo adoption" is code for "We gotta save white babies!"


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