Stem Cell Research

The republicans have been experts at using “wedge issues” like gay marriage, gun control, etc to draw votes from the very people who their economic policies harm the most. Sometimes I just sit back and marvel at how good the republicans are at politics.

But they are making a big mistake with stem cell research. This is a “wedge issue” that is going to work against them. I’ve seen numbers like 70% of the American public supports stem cell research.

Of course they do. It has the potential to prolong life, reduce suffering, make our lives better. And if we don’t do the research here in this country, they are going to do it elsewhere and so we’ll be falling behind in a critical area of biotechnology if we don’t change our stem cell policy.

But the Republicans are hostage to their conservative wing on this one and they are going to get hurt by it. The average American isn’t as stupid as the Republicans think they are. They see that the embryos are there to be used. They see that the embryos are just going to get destroyed if they aren’t used for stem cell research. They see that this is not an abortion issue, it’s a human life issue.

We use the hearts, livers, and other body parts of dead people all the time to make other people’s lives better. We might not like how they died, but the fact is they are dead and we at least ought to get something good out of that.

I hope the democrats make a big issue of this in the coming mid-term election. It’s good that Bush vetoed this. It would be good if the Republicans can’t summon the votes to overturn the veto.

Because the administration is wrong on this one and America knows it.