Stem Cell Initiative Too Close to Call; Regardless, Seats Gained Won’t be Enough to Override Bush’s Veto

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Still too soon to tell on Missouri’s stem cell initiative, which is trailing in early returns (perhaps as goes McCaskill, so go stem cells?), but the Chronicle of Higher Education today posed this interesting what-if take on the bigger picture, getting federal support for embryonic stem cell research. The Chron asked: If Democrats won every single election up for grabs today, would there be enough pro-stem-cell members of Congress to overturn President Bush’s veto on federal financing for research on new lines of embryonic stem cells?

Their analysis says no. A two-thirds majority of both chambers of Congress is needed to override a presidential veto and there was plenty of bipartisan support for the override. But even given the cross-aisle sentiments that support stem-cell research, the Chronicle analysis concludes that the voting records of candidates show that there simply aren’t enough pro-stem-cell bodies to make the two-thirds overriding majority.

Looks like we need a change bigger than a new Congress to see stem cell research progress. Together now: two years and counting.

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