19 July 2006

El Presidente finally finds something he will not stand for

Medical advancement.
Bush vetoes stem cell bill as promised

By MARY DALRYMPLE, Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON - President Bush cast the first veto of his 5 1/2-year presidency Wednesday, saying legislation easing limits on federal funding for embryonic stem cell research "crosses a moral boundary" and is wrong.

"This bill would support the taking of innocent human life of the hope of finding medical benefits for others," Bush said at a White House event where he was surrounded by 18 families who "adopted" frozen embryos not used by other couples, and then used those leftover embryos to have children.

"Each of these children was still adopted while still an embryo and has been blessed with a chance to grow, to grow up in a loving family. These boys and girls are not spare parts," he said.

The veto came a day after the Senate defied Bush and approved the legislation, 63-37, four votes short of the two-thirds margin needed to override. White House officials and Republican congressional leaders claimed it was unlikely that Congress could override the veto.

Bush's support was the strongest in the House, which was expected to take up the veto as early as later Wednesday.

Bush has supported federally funded research on only those stem cell lines created before Aug. 9, 2001, the date of his speech to the nation on the subject.

The president vetoed the measure shortly after it came to his desk. His position was politically popular among conservative Republicans, and it was sure to be an issue in the midterm congressional elections.

Announcing the veto, Bush was surrounded in the East Room by so-called "snowflake" families, those with children born through embryo donation.

"They remind us of what is lost when embryos are destroyed in the name of research. The remind us that we all begin our lives as a small collection of cells. And they remind us that in our zeal for new treatments and cures, America must never abandon our fundamental morals," Bush said.

He said the bill would have crossed a line and "once crossed, we would find it impossible to turn back."
America must never abandon our fundamental morals?

You mean our fundamentalists' morals, don't you?

This is arguably the most contemptible move we've seen from a truly contemptible man. My family has experienced, first-hand, what it's like to have relatives wither and deteriorate, ravaged by the effects of both Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. To now see those who do--and will--suffer from such afflictions cast aside in favor of this utterly dishonest, opportunistic sop to the radical right is beyond revolting.

The fact of the matter is, this bill would still strictly regulate the research in question. The stem lines available for federal funding are largely useless due to past contamination with mouse cells. The new bill's eligible research would involve frozen embryos, not only from donors who signed informed consent releases for their use, but that were already subject to imminent destruction as medical waste.

George Bush values life so highly, that he would rather see these embryos literally washed down the drain, than a small portion of them, willingly donated, get used for research that could save countless people for decades to come. That fact, like many others, gets hidden behind the curtain while Dear Leader poses and gladhands for the cameras.

Similarly concealed?

The reality that disposal is absolutely necessary, since the number of embryos aging out of viability overwhelmingly dwarfs the number of families seeking to "adopt" them for implantation. For the vast majority, there is simply no possibility of so-called "snowflake families" here, which makes their inclusion as window dressing for this morning's staged veto photo-op all the more offensive, and inexcusably political.

Then again, if it weren't for empty gestures and shameless exploitation, what would the little dictator be left with?

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