Rep. Diana DeGette, D-Colorado, who will be the lead sponsor of a house bill to expand federally funded research said last week after meeting with the 41 new house Democrats, “to describe them as wildly enthusiastic about this bill would be an understatement.” House-speaker elect Nancy Pelosi, D-California, has high priority stamped on the stem cell bill announcing it will be on the agenda for the first 100 hours of the 110th congress.

Michigan’s governor, Jennifer Granholm and Iowa’s governor-elect, Chet Culver, both democrats, have already announced they would overturn their state’s current bans which prohibit all human cloning.

Iowa’s Human Cloning Prohibition Act, “Prohibits human cloning for any purpose; prohibits transfer or receipt of a cloned human embryo for any purpose, or of any oocyte, human embryo, fetus, or human somatic cell, for the purpose of human cloning; human cloning punishable as Class C felony; shipping or receiving punishable as aggravated misdemeanor; if violation of the law results in pecuniary gain, then the individual is liable for twice the amount of gross gain; a violation is grounds for revoking licensure or denying or revoking certification for a trade or occupation.

And Michigan’s Human Cloning Funding Prohibition Act, “Prohibits human cloning for any purpose and prohibits the use of state funds for human cloning; establishes civil and criminal penalties.”

And with the key defeat of the passage of amendment 2 in Missouri, other states on getting into the human cloning act. States like Florida are in signature gathering mode to get their hyped up research for cures initiatives on the 2008 ballot.

Senator Orrin Hatch states he is also confident he has the support to overturn the sole Bush veto of last summer—H.R. 810 was a bill that would have expanded federal funding to embryo stem cell research using surplus embryos in fertility clinics, had Bush not vetoed it.

The irony of all of this is that what many of our public servants seek to do is criminalized in other parts of the world. Proposition 71 (California’s cloning stem cell initiative) and Amendment 2, (Missouri’s human cloning legislation) style research, if done in Canada or France would land you in jail. This is the very same research that the UN called upon all of their member nations to ban, reject, prohibit—and we seek to advance here in the U.S. This research, which much of the world rejects because it is not compatible with the dignity and protection of human life, because it uses young women as the raw material and because it advances research on the backs of the poor is what we here in America call scientific progress. Go figure.

Author Profile

Jennifer Lahl, CBC Founder
Jennifer Lahl, CBC Founder
Jennifer Lahl, MA, BSN, RN, is founder and president of The Center for Bioethics and Culture Network. Lahl couples her 25 years of experience as a pediatric critical care nurse, a hospital administrator, and a senior-level nursing manager with a deep passion to speak for those who have no voice. Lahl’s writings have appeared in various publications including Cambridge University Press, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Dallas Morning News, and the American Journal of Bioethics. As a field expert, she is routinely interviewed on radio and television including ABC, CBS, PBS, and NPR. She is also called upon to speak alongside lawmakers and members of the scientific community, even being invited to speak to members of the European Parliament in Brussels to address issues of egg trafficking; she has three times addressed the United Nations during the Commission on the Status of Women on egg and womb trafficking.