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Thread: Republican Senate Leader Frist to back ESC research!

  1. #1

    Republican Senate Leader Frist to back ESC research!

    "In a break with Bush, Senate Republican leader Bill Frist will support bill to expand fed financing for embryonic stem cell research -- will announce decision in morning with lengthy Senate speech..."
    www.drudereport.com

    This is a key vote, but the religious right is going to up his ass on this, potentially getting him to change his mind. Here's Frist's contact info so you can lend him support:

    Washington, D.C.:
    Office of Senator Bill Frist
    509 Hart Senate Office Building
    Washington, DC 20510
    202-224-3344
    202-228-1264 (fax)

    Nashville:
    Office of Senator Bill Frist
    28 White Bridge Road
    Suite 211
    Nashville, TN 37205
    615-352-9411
    615-352-9985 (fax)

  2. #2
    Banned Faye's Avatar
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    YES!!,YES!!,YES!!

    It's TRUE!!!

    Senate's Leader Veers From Bush Over Stem Cells


    By SHERYL GAY STOLBERG
    Published: July 29, 2005
    WASHINGTON, July 28

    - In a break with President Bush, the Senate Republican leader, Bill Frist, has decided to support a bill to expand federal financing for embryonic stem cell research, a move that could push it closer to passage and force a confrontation with the White House, which is threatening to veto the measure.

    Mr. Frist, a heart-lung transplant surgeon who said last month that he did not back expanding financing "at this juncture," is expected to announce his decision Friday morning in a lengthy Senate speech. In it, he says that while he has reservations about altering Mr. Bush's four-year-old policy, which placed strict limits on taxpayer financing for the work, he supports the bill nonetheless.

    "While human embryonic stem cell research is still at a very early stage, the limitations put in place in 2001 will, over time, slow our ability to bring potential new treatments for certain diseases," Mr. Frist says, according to a text of the speech provided by his office Thursday evening. "Therefore, I believe the president's policy should be modified."

    Mr. Frist's move will undoubtedly change the political landscape in the debate over embryonic stem cell research, one of the thorniest moral issues to come before Congress. The chief House sponsor of the bill, Representative Michael N. Castle, Republican of Delaware, said, "His support is of huge significance."

    The stem cell bill has passed the House but is stalled in the Senate, where competing measures are also under consideration. Because Mr. Frist's colleagues look to him for advice on medical matters, his support for the bill could break the Senate logjam. It could also give undecided Republicans political license to back the legislation, which is already close to having the votes it needs to pass the Senate.

    The move could also have implications for Mr. Frist's political future. The senator is widely considered a potential candidate for the presidency in 2008, and supporting an expansion of the policy will put him at odds not only with the White House but also with Christian conservatives, whose support he will need in the race for the Republican nomination. But the decision could also help him win support among centrists.

    "I am pro-life," Mr. Frist says in the speech, arguing that he can reconcile his support for the science with his own Christian faith. "I believe human life begins at conception."

    But at the same time, he says, "I also believe that embryonic stem cell research should be encouraged and supported."

    Backers of the research were elated. "This is critically important," said Larry Soler, a lobbyist for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. "The Senate majority leader, who is also a physician, is confirming the real potential of embryonic stem cell research and the need to expand the policy.".....

    http://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/29/po...opwS4h7gLc6uOQ

    "There’s far too much unthinking respect given to authority,” Molly Ivins explained; “What you need is sustained outrage.”
    Kerr, Keirstead, McDonald, Stice and Jun Yan courageously work on ESCR to Cure SCI.

    Divisiveness comes from not following Christopher Reeve's ESCR lead.
    Young does ASCR.
    [I]I do not tear down CRPA, I ONLY make peopl

  3. #3
    http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/N28405931.htm

    Sen. leader breaks with Bush on stem cells -report
    29 Jul 2005 06:35:42 GMT
    Source: Reuters
    By JoAnne Allen

    "Cure today may be just a theory, a hope, a dream," Frist said in a copy of the speech quoted by the Times. "But the promise is powerful enough that I believe this research deserves our increased energy and focus. Embryonic stem cell research must be supported."

    Frist, a potential 2008 presidential contender, outlined in a 2001 speech his belief in the value of embryonic stem-cell research within certain ethical boundaries. The goals he set in that speech closely match the embryonic stem-cell bill.

  4. #4
    Bush is taking one for the team. Frist needs this to appeal to the Centrists, and Bush's guaranteed veto allows him to take this stand on the issue. Bush maintains his appeal with the Right, Frist gains approval from the Centrists, Bush campaigns for Frist in 2008 (if he gets the nod, which is likely) and hands the Right to Frist. This is purely political.

    If Republicans can maintain their hold through the 2008 elections, embryonic stem cell research will still not be allowed and Frist can set forth an "ethical" ESC policy that pacifies all sides. (Assuming we don't know how to reprogram somatic cells into ESCs by then.)

    Don't celebrate too soon.
    ...it's worse than we thought. it turns out the people at the white house are not secret muslims, they're nerds.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Edwards
    Bush is taking one for the team. Frist needs this to appeal to the Centrists, and Bush's guaranteed veto allows him to take this stand on the issue. Bush maintains his appeal with the Right, Frist gains approval from the Centrists, Bush campaigns for Frist in 2008 (if he gets the nod, which is likely) and hands the Right to Frist. This is purely political.

    If Republicans can maintain their hold through the 2008 elections, embryonic stem cell research will still not be allowed and Frist can set forth an "ethical" ESC policy that pacifies all sides. (Assuming we don't know how to reprogram somatic cells into ESCs by then.)

    Don't celebrate too soon.
    If the margin of support is high enough, isn't the Bush veto out the window?
    Frist's announcement may just be what was needed to accomplish that 2/3 (?) vote to override a veto.
    Don't ignore the Reeve Legacy, Remember he and Dana supported open research and fought hard for ESCR

    StemCellBattles

    Support H.R. 810

  6. #6
    You need a two-thirds majority in both the House of Representatives and the Senate. The Senate will likely get the two-thirds majority, while the House won't.

    Frist is speaking now.
    ...it's worse than we thought. it turns out the people at the white house are not secret muslims, they're nerds.

  7. #7
    The first interpretation is that Frist will support the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act of 2005 (HR810/S471). I wonder if Frist said anywhere that he supports the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act of 2005 (HR810/S471).

    A second interpretation is that, even though he is now saying that supports embryonic stem cell research, he is supporting one of the alternative bills. The following is according to Roll Call.

    http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/medi...p?newsid=28040

    Sen. Coleman Crafting Seventh Embryonic Stem Cell Research-Related Bill; Other Stem Cell Bills Likely Delayed

    26 Jul 2005

    Senator Norm Coleman (R-Minn) is working to introduce a seventh piece of legislation relating to embryonic stem cell research and human cloning that the Senate could consider this week before the August recess,... Roll Call reports. Although a Coleman aide declined to give specifics on what might be included in the possible legislation, the fact that alternative stem cell measures are still being crafted makes it increasingly unlikely that the Senate will take action on any of the pieces of stem cell legislation, according to Roll Call (Pierce, Roll Call, 7/25). The House in May approved the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act of 2005 (HR 810/S 471), which would allow research using stem cells derived from embryos originally created for fertility treatments and willingly donated by patients, but President Bush has threatened to veto the bill. Frist is promoting alternative legislation (HR 3144) that would promote new, unproven techniques that might allow scientists to retrieve embryonic stem cells without creating or destroying embryos as a compromise measure between Bush's current policy
    And here is a brief description of some of the alternative bills in USA Today
    http://www.usatoday.com/news/washing...s-senate_x.htm
    One analyst says the different bills offer senators some protection. "It looks like an effort to find cover for Republicans who don't want to vote for the House bill but don't want to be out there opposing something that's very popular with most Americans," said Norman Ornstein, a congressional expert at the American Enterprise Institute, a Washington think tank.

    Despite the maneuvering, senators who support the Specter bill defended Frist's management of the issue. Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, a supporter of embryonic stem cell research, called it "a legitimate attempt to try to give everyone something they can be for."

    There were bills for those who want to end all embryonic stem cell research and for those willing to expand research with some limits:

    • Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kan., who equates destroying an embryo for research with abortion, has drafted a bill that would ban all human cloning, including human embryonic stem cell research.

    • Hutchison, R-Texas, usually a reliable Bush vote, offers a compromise that would move the cutoff date for using frozen embryos in research to the day her bill would become law. That would make 400,000 existing embryos eligible to be donated for research. The new deadline "would discourage any possibility of having an industry of creating embryos to destroy them" she said. "It's the best combination of ethical restrictions but one that allows moving forward to do the research."

    Harkin says those opposed to his bill on moral grounds aren't likely to accept Hutchison's. "If (Bush) can accept that, he can accept ours," Harkin says.

    •Frist, Johnny Isakson of Georgia and George Allen of Virginia are among Senate Republicans backing a bill supported by the White House that would fund research that extracted stem cells from human embryos without destroying them. Many scientists, including Harvard's George Daley, a stem cell researcher, say such "alternatives" are unproven and would divert and delay legitimate medical research.

    • Hatch has a bill that would fund research to extract stem cells from umbilical cord blood and bone marrow. A similar House measure passed overwhelmingly.

    White House spokesman Trent Duffy says Bush wants "to balance the science and ethics" of stem cell research "without using taxpayer money to destroy human embryos."

    American University political scientist James Thurber says Bush hasn't built public support for his position on stem cell research and "may get rolled on this one."
    A third possibility is that Frist has heard that George Bush will not veto and Frist does not want to sacrifice his reputation for something that Bush would not veto. After all, on Thursday morning, Frist had objected to bringing HR810/471 onto the floor of the Senate
    A Senate bill that would expand funding for embryonic stem-cell research appears to be dead in the water, at least until the fall.

    Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tennessee) denied a request Thursday morning to address a bill that would expand funding of embryonic stem-cell research in the United States.

    According to Sean Tipton, a spokesman for the Coalition for the Advancement of Medical Research, Sen. Jack Reed (D-Rhode Island) made a motion to bring up the bill, and Frist objected.
    Wise.
    Last edited by Wise Young; 07-29-2005 at 01:48 PM.

  8. #8
    It was actually Senator Reid from Nevada who asked for the unanimous consent vote.
    ...it's worse than we thought. it turns out the people at the white house are not secret muslims, they're nerds.

  9. #9
    From the Congressional Record (PDF):

    Mr. Frist: On H.R. 810, the consent process is inadequate, from my standpoint. There is not an ideal ethical construct. It says informed consent, but it does not specifically talk about the potential for financial incentives between, say, a physician and an in vitro fertilization clinic. That is not addressed specifically in the bill. Instead of voting up or down, I would like to at least discuss those issues.

    Another issue--there is informed consent and the financial incentives--would be if we pass it, it is passed forever; there is no opportunity to come back and look at it on a periodic basis, say, every 4 or 5 years.

    I mention those concerns because I am willing to step back and give a clean vote on that if we can take into consideration other people's issues or their particular bills. I am a little surprised my colleagues have not taken me up on that opportunity, but since they have not, we will have to come back and figure the best way to address it when we get back after the recess.
    ...it's worse than we thought. it turns out the people at the white house are not secret muslims, they're nerds.

  10. #10
    Banned Faye's Avatar
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    Senator Kennedy and Senator Feinstein on HR 810!!

    Mr. KENNEDY: They say there is no time for stem cells, or for the needs of our troops, or our veterans, or working families. There's plenty of time to protect the
    makers of lethal assault weapons--but no time for lifesaving cures.


    The bill is right there, Mr. President, right there on that desk in front of you. At any time, the majority leader could walk over, pick it up and have a vote on a bill that would bring new hope to millions of Americans.

    For years, patients and their families waited for a medical breakthrough to provide new hope for serious illnesses like Parkinson's disease, spinal injury, and Alzheimer's disease.

    Then at last, dedicated scientists made that breakthrough. They discovered stem cells, which can repair the injuries that cause untold suffering and shorten lives.

    The cruel irony is that just as medicine was giving patients new hope, the Bush administration snatched it away through needless restrictions on stem cell research,

    In a few days, on August 9, patients across America will mark the fourth tragic anniversary of that cruel decision.

    We in the United States Senate had the opportunity--no, we had the responsibility--to see that August 9 of this year did not mark 4 years of failure and 4 years of missed opportunity.

    But the Republican leadership would not let us meet that responsibility. They let the first week of July slip by, and then the second, and now the last--all with no action on this urgently needed legislation.

    Every day that we delay is another day of falling behind in the race to cure diabetes, cancer, Parkinson's disease, and many other serious illnesses.

    It is another day for America to lose ground to Korea, Singapore, Britain, and other nations in the competition for global leadership in biotechnology.

    Most of all, it is another day of shattered hopes for millions of patients and their families across America.

    Some respond to the failure of the current policy by saying we should explore new ways to develop embryonic stem cells. I agree. Let's explore the potential of new discoveries in genetics and cell science to improve the ways we can tap the potential of stem cells. But let's not restrict essential research while scientists explore speculative and preliminary theories.

    Some say we should encourage research on stem cells from the blood in umbilical cords or on adult stem cells from bone marrow and other tissues. Again, I agree. We should seek help for patients wherever it may be found. But it makes no sense to limit medical research to one narrow channel when the Nation's leading scientists agree that these alternatives have a more limited potential than embryonic stem cells. As a letter signed by 80 Nobel laureates in February 2001 stated:


    Current evidence suggests that adult stem cells have markedly restricted differentiation potential. Therefore, for disorders that prove not to be treatable with adult stem cells, impeding human pluripotent stem cell research risks unnecessary delay for millions of patients who may die or endure needless suffering while the effectiveness of adult stem cells is evaluated.


    The conclusion of an NIH report in June 2001 is clear:

    Stem cells in adult tissues do not appear to have the same capacity to differentiate as do embryonic stem cells.

    It would be cruel to base the hopes of millions of patients on an ideological conclusion that these experts are wrong. By all means, let's pursue vigorous research on adult stem cells, but let's not deceive the American public into thinking it's an adequate substitute for embryonic stem cell research.

    Legislation should be an expression of our values, and our legislation says loud and clear that we value patients and their families--not rigid ideology.

    It is a travesty that no action has been taken on this lifesaving measure.

    Mrs. FEINSTEIN. Mr. President, I rise to speak in support of the unanimous consent request offered today by Senator Reid. The Senator has asked unanimous consent for the Senate to take up H.R. 810, the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act, and S. 1317, the Bone Marrow and Cord Blood Therapy and Research Act.

    Both of these bills have been passed by the House and are sitting at the desk waiting to be passed by the Senate and sent to the President for his signature.

    The month of July has come and is nearly gone. Yet these two House-passed bills, with strong bipartisan support, sit and wait at the desk.

    The Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act has 41 sponsors--Republicans and Democrats alike. This legislation is the result of many years of bipartisan cooperation in both the House and Senate. I am pleased to join my colleagues, Senator ARLEN SPECTER, TOM HARKIN, ORRIN HATCH, TED KENNEDY, and GORDON SMITH, who have worked tirelessly on behalf of patients and their families across this Nation to see that embryonic stem cell research moves forward.

    This legislation is proof positive that Senators from many different points of view, be they liberal or conservative, pro-life or pro-choice, can work together on legislation that will help speed the pace of cures and treatments for more than 110 million Americans.

    Identical legislation passed the House on May 24 by a vote of 238 to 194. Congressman MIKE CASTLE, Republican, Delaware, and DIANA DEGETTE, Democrat, Colorado, are to be commended for their tireless work in getting this bill passed in the House.

    It is essential that the Senate move quickly to pass this bill. The clock is ticking. August 9 marks the fourth anniversary of President Bush's policy limiting Federal funding for embryonic stem cell research. At the time it was thought there were 78 stem cell lines available to researchers, today that number is 22. And all 22 of the lines available are contaminated by mouse feeder cells and not usable for research in humans.

    So why has the Senate still not acted? The simple unanimous consent request put forth by Senator Reid would allow the Senate to vote on this bill as early as today. We could send it to the President for his signature tonight.

    What is going on here is an attempt to obscure what is a very simple issue. What is going on here is an attempt to allow votes on other bills in order to pull votes away from H.R. 810, the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act.

    http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/...Gh3cNG:e19019:
    Last edited by Faye; 07-29-2005 at 11:00 AM.

    "There’s far too much unthinking respect given to authority,” Molly Ivins explained; “What you need is sustained outrage.”
    Kerr, Keirstead, McDonald, Stice and Jun Yan courageously work on ESCR to Cure SCI.

    Divisiveness comes from not following Christopher Reeve's ESCR lead.
    Young does ASCR.
    [I]I do not tear down CRPA, I ONLY make peopl

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