We Will Pass This Bill

We are on the brink of cures for diseases that affect hundreds of millions around the world. Opponents of stem cell research often point to adult stem cells as a suitable alternative. However, legitimate scientists disagree. Dr. Harold Varmus, the former head of our National Institutes of Health, said, 'Compared to adult stem cells, embryonic stem cells have a much greater potential, according to all existing scientific literature.'

On Wednesday, the President exercised the first veto of his presidency on this law. President Bush has signed bills to give subsidies to Big Oil, to give tax cuts to the wealthiest few, and subsidies to HMOs, but he could not find it in his heart to give hope to America's families, proudly boasting that he was protecting America from crossing a 'moral line.' I am tempted to point out the obvious - the President's veto had nothing to do with morals. It had everything to do with cold, calculated, cynical political gain - the kind of politics that snuffs out the candle of hope, and that condemns the disabled and the sick.

The President's veto is a sad sidebar in a debate that has been about ethical scientific research and hope. The veto has backfired already, putting the spotlight on his stubborn resistance to facts. This last-gasp effort to stop stem cell research will be viewed by historians as a sign more of the weakness of the opponents than a roadblock to progress.

We cannot stand back and ignore a valuable research tool that might work medical miracles. We won't turn our backs on those in need. We will pass this bill.  This fight is just beginning.