Friday, September 03, 2010

Life Links 9/3/10

Politico has an article on the possibility of Diana DeGette's legislation to overturn or amend the Dickey Amendment and re-allow federal funding on embryonic stem cell research. Unfortunately, writer Richard Cohen can't accurately describe the issue at hand.
As Congress prepares to return for a limited pre-election agenda, Rep. Diana DeGette (D-Colo.) said she has picked up wide support for her bill to permit embryonic stem-cell research and expects it will pass this month. Although it has been strongly opposed by anti-abortion activists, she voiced confidence that the measure will be a political boost for its backers as well as good policy.
Really? Is it that hard to put "the federal funding of" between "permit" and "embryonic stem-cell research"?

DeGette also shows her incredible ignorance of basic biology but at least she admits the unborn are organisms.
But DeGette has joined with outside researchers and the Health and Human Services Department in contending that Lamberth’s ruling, which was quickly appealed by the administration, misread the law. “Embryos and stem cells are two entirely different organisms,” and they involve different types of research, she said.
If I was an ESCR advocate, I'm not sure I'd want someone who thinks stem cells are organisms to be my spokesperson.

The Center for Reproductive Rights has issued a "First Look Back at the 2010 State Legislative Session" report which contends that "2010 has been one of the most challenging state legislative sessions for women’s access to abortion in many years. States considered and enacted some of the most extreme restrictions on abortion in recent memory, as well as passing laws creating dozens of other significant new hurdles."

A Wall Street Journal blog has a short interview with James Sherley and Theresa Deisher, the plaintiffs in the case Sherley v. Sebelius which has at least temporarily halted the federal funding of embryonic stem cell research.
About 2004, I was sitting in my kitchen with my kids listening to the radio – I have two daughters – and I heard one of my colleagues responding to a question from an interviewer. The question was, “Do scientists and physicians know when life begins?” And the response was, we weren’t sure. I knew that not to be the case. My whole reason for being here now is because of recognizing there’s a need for scientists to give the public information that’s correct. And then the public can make more informed decisions about what we should do with embryos and embryonic stem cell research.

In Minnesota, Connie Stroud has been sentenced to three years in jail for driving drunk and crashing her truck into a minivan and killing an unborn child.
Connie Stroud, 43, had a blood-alcohol level of 0.17 percent, more than twice the legal limit, when she drove the wrong way on an Interstate 94 ramp in north Minneapolis and struck the van, carrying Tao Thao, who was 24 weeks pregnant, her husband, Yia Vang, and their five children.

At a two-hour sentencing Wednesday, Thao and Vang wore T-shirts reading "We love you. Always and Forever" and carrying an image of the boy they had planned to name Jaylee.

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