WASHINGTON—(April 11, 2007) An official of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) reacted to this evening's vote by the U.S. Senate to approve legislation (S. 5) promoting the destruction of human embryos for federally funded stem cell research. The Senate voted for this bill 63 to 34. At the same time, S. 30, a bill to promote alternative ways to pursue stem cell research without harming human embryos, was also approved, 70 to 28.
Richard M. Doerflinger, Deputy Director of the USCCB Secretariat for Pro-Life Activities, said: "With enactment of S. 5, millions of taxpayers would be forced to promote attacks on innocent human life in the name of scientific progress. Americans have not been required to assist in such direct exploitation of vulnerable human life in the past. Because the President has promised to veto this bill, and opposition to it in Congress is sufficient to uphold his veto in both House and Senate, we expect that this terrible burden will not be placed on the American people now."
"Many members of Congress remain dazzled by irresponsibly hyped promises of 'miracle cures' from the destruction of human embryos, although experts in the field increasingly admit that treatments from this avenue may be decades away," said Mr. Doerflinger. "This debate continues to divert attention and resources away from the demonstrated therapeutic promise of morally sound research using adult and cord blood stem cells. Not only embryonic human beings, but suffering patients and their families, are victims of the Senate's fixation on destructive research."