Thursday, April 22, 2010

Michigan Senate passes legislation to provide transparency and reporting to embryonic stem cell research

On April 21, the Michigan Senate overwhelmingly passed a package of bills to provide transparency for researching involving human embryos in Michigan. In November of 2008, Michigan voters voted to pass Proposal 2 and legalize the killing of human embryos in Michigan for research purposes. The language of Proposal 2 failed to provide any definitions or accountability. This package of bills draws clear parameters around this research as promised by the proponents and voted on by the people.

Supporters in the Republican-led Senate said regulations are needed to clarify vague areas of Proposal 2, the constitutional amendment voters approved in 2008 that expands use of human embryos for any research permitted under federal law.

"I'd like to know how many embryos the University of Michigan has stored. Is it thousands, or three?" said Sen. Tom George, R-Kalamazoo, a sponsor of the package. "It's an after-the-fact report -- it does not discourage, obstruct or restrict research."