Thursday, April 28, 2005

What happened to stem cells?

The State Affairs Committee did not meet yesterday and won’t meet again until Monday. But as we witnessed the past three weeks, two big issues unleashed debate over the right to life- stem cells and abortion (mainly, parental consent for minors). But one has to wonder why two contentious issues were handled so differently by the Committee.

The majority of the abortion bills sailed through committee. Yet, bills relating to stem cell research have been left pending. Woolley’s HB 1929 (Rep. Beverley Woolley, R-Houston, and Sen. Eliot Shapleigh, D-El Paso filed HB 1929 to ban human reproductive cloning but ensure that promising stem cell research remains legal in Texas) received all the votes it needed to get out of committee, but was left pending. Rumor has it that word came from above that stem cell legislation wasn’t going to move.

Just a thought- the governor’s election is coming up and Sen. Hutchison, Perry’s likely opponent in the next election, has been very outspoken about her support for stem cell research. If stem cell bills don’t move, then Perry won’t have to take a stance, possibly isolating more moderate Republicans.