News ArchivesRead News

Bill to regulate stem-cell research rejected by Senate

Thursday April 21, 2005


Olympia, WA, Aug. 12, 2005(AP) - OLYMPIA -- After days of delay, the Senate killed a bill yesterday that would permit and regulate stem-cell research, with two Republicans who originally supported the measure jumping back to join their caucus.

Senate Minority Leader Bill Finkbeiner, R-Kirkland, was the lone Republican to vote for the bill, which was defeated 26-23.

The measure would permit stem-cell research, including the use of human embryonic stem cells, but prohibit reproductive cloning.

Senate Democrats said they thought they had enough votes to pass the bill, but a few senators apparently changed their minds.

Sen. Mike Hewitt, R-Walla Walla, voted against the bill after giving a floor speech Friday in which he said he was voting in favor. He said he lost his grandfather and a close friend to Alzheimer’s and that his father died from complications of diabetes.

Hewitt did not return phone calls yesterday afternoon.

Senate Republicans tried various tactics to delay yesterday’s vote, including asking that the Senate adjourn early, and seeking to send the bill back to committee.

The stalling frustrated Senate Democrats, who have been waiting to vote on the bill since an emotional debate Thursday.

Embryonic stem cells are at the heart of the controversy. Such cells come from human embryos created through in-vitro fertilization. The embryos are destroyed when stem cells are extracted.

Scientists believe embryonic stem-cell research could lead to cures for diseases such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and diabetes. Opponents say destroying the embryos is destroying human life.

Senate Democrats say the bill still has a chance. In an attempt to keep it alive, Majority Leader Lisa Brown, D-Spokane, switched her vote from yes to no. Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles, D-Seattle, said that because Brown voted with the majority, Senate rules will allow Brown to bring the bill back for reconsideration.

Recent News

Nov 22 - A caregiver's story: Living and loving through the slow process of dying
Nov 19 - Testosterone cause of sex differences in the occurrence of Parkinson’s disease, new research suggests
Nov 18 - New strategy reduces side effects in Parkinson's treatment
Nov 14 - Opinion: The never-ending tests of Parkinson's disease
Nov 13 - Parkinson’s disease: A new tool for diagnosis
Nov 10 - Parkinson's Disease Drug May Be Useful For Delaying, Preventing Blindness In Older Population
Nov 9 - Microsoft VP’s diagnosis fuels employees’ heartfelt efforts to help others
Nov 6 - Lewy body dementia: unrecognized and misdiagnosed
Nov 5 - Gait difficulties in Parkinson's linked to new blood vessels in brain
Oct 30 - Special Section: Enabling Technologies for Parkinson’s Disease Management
Oct 27 - Scientists discover a 'switchboard' of molecules that protect against Parkinson's disease
Oct 26 - Dancing improves mobility and quality of life in people with Parkinson's
Oct 23 - The amazing woman who can smell Parkinson’s disease — before symptoms appear
Oct 20 - Personal Essay: The deviousness of dementia
Oct 19 - Mechanism that 'melts' protein clumps may lead to new Parkinson's treatments
Oct 19 - Researchers find that stem cell treatment may reduce cognitive impairment related to dementia with Lewy bodies
Oct 17 - Cancer Drug Helps Parkinson's Patients
Oct 12 - Researchers identify immune gene that can prevent Parkinson's disease and dementia
Oct 12 - Blog Post: An Alert, Well-Hydrated Artist in No Acute Distress
Oct 7 - This month, a brain surgery will be broadcast on live TV for the first time ever