By John Jalsevac

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 20, 2007 ( – For the second time during his presidency, George W. Bush has chosen to invoke his privilege of a presidential veto to veto a bill that, if signed into law, would lift the ban on federal funds being used for the purpose of destructive embryonic stem-cell research.

Congress had already passed an almost identical bill about a year ago, which President Bush also vetoed.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi criticized Bush for his latest veto with strong words in an e-mail sent to supporters on behalf of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, once again employing religious-like language about the issue, referring to the “miracle” of embryonic stem-cell research. On Wednesday, said Pelosi, “with a single stroke of his cruel veto pen, President Bush will dash the hopes of millions of Americans seeking cures through the miracle of stem cell research.”

“He will say ‘No’ to hope.”

Previously Speaker Pelosi had horrified pro-life advocates by referring to embryonic stem cell research as a “gift from God.”

President Bush, however, has repeatedly expressed his conviction that American taxpayers should not be forced to fund a type of research that not only has seen no success in creating the types of cures that some have promised, but that is also ethically execrable. He has also repeatedly expressed his desire to encourage stem-cell research that uses sources of stem-cells that do not involve the destruction of human life, sources of stem-cells that have already produced numerous actual cures.

The issue is a deeply emotional one, with many appealing to hypothetical benefits for the health and well-being of “millions.” Currently there is widespread support for embryonic stem-cell research in the public. Opponents of embryonic stem-cell research, however, point out that the “right to life” of embryonic human beings is a fundamental right that must trump any notion of a “right to health.”

A year ago, when he issued his first veto on the embryonic stem-cell bill, Bush did so surrounded by children who had been “leftover” frozen embryos and who had been adopted by parents willing to have the embryonic children implanted in the mother.

“Each of these children was adopted while still an embryo and has been blessed with the chance to grow, to grow up in a loving family,” said the president at the time, surrounded by the children.

The President immediately responded to the second passage of the bill by Congress several weeks ago with an official statement, expressing his disappointment that the “leadership of Congress recycled an old bill that would simply overturn our country’s carefully balanced policy on embryonic stem cell research.”

“If this bill were to become law,” said the President, “American taxpayers would for the first time in our history be compelled to support the deliberate destruction of human embryos. Crossing that line would be a grave mistake. For that reason, I will veto the bill passed today.”

Presidential hopeful Mitt Romney agreed with the President’s decision, and pointed out that emotional appeals based upon potential cures are not a valid way to justify destroying life. “I have a wife that has a serious disease that could be affected by stem cell research and others,” said Romney this last month, “but I will not, I will not create new embryos through cloning or through embryo farming, because that will be creating life for the purpose of destroying it.”

  See related coverage:

Congress Attempts to Lift Ban on Federal Funding for Embryo Research – Again: Bush Will Veto

“Embryos are Humans” Says U.S. Government Report on Stem Cell Research

UK Researcher: Embryonic Stem Cells Have Never Been Used to Treat Anyone and no Plans Exist to do so
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  Part II:…;


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