New Jersey Governor Faces More Pressure on Stem Cell Research Bill
by Steven Ertelt
December 31, 2003
Trenton, NJ (LifeNews.com) — Two pro-life organizations this week have stepped up pressure on New Jersey Governor Jim McGreevey, who is set to sign a bill that they say will be the most extreme law ever pass regarding human cloning and embryonic stem cell research.
The New Jersey state legislature passed a "clone and kill" bill that allows the creation of cloned human embryos who can be implanted into a woman’s womb and then destroyed at any point during their development so scientists can obtain stem cells for use in research.
"If ever there was a piece of legislation which tramples the sanctity of life, it is the one Gov. McGreevey is poised to sign," said Connie Mackey, Family Research Council’s Vice President for Government Affairs.
"The new law would authorize New Jersey’s large biotech industry to actually clone a human embryo, implant that embryo into a woman’s womb, develop the embryo to the fetal stage and then kill it for ‘research purposes,’" Mackey explained.
Meanwhile, McGreevey, a Catholic is being lobbied by Priests for Life to veto the legislation.
"The Holy Father has repeatedly said that stem cells for purposes of experimentation or treatment should never come from human embryos," said Father Peter West, a representative of the pro-life Catholic group.
West said that Catholic state legislators who voted for the bill are also violating their church’s ethical views. The Catechism opposes the creation of laws that "establish social structures leading to the decline of morals and the corruption of religious practice."
"We urge Governor McGreevey … to follow the teachings of his faith and veto this horrific bill," Father West said.
West said McGreevey should instead promote ethical research that can accomplish the same goals, such as research using adult stem cells from various sources such as umbilical cord blood, bone marrow, or fat cells removed from liposuction.
"Allowing human babies to be cloned, implanted, and then killed for their parts combines the horrors of partial-birth abortion with the Frankenstein-like practices of human cloning that 90 percent of Americans oppose," Mackey added. "This single piece of legislation will let the entire world know that New Jersey is the number one most hostile place for human life in recent memory."
Last week, three pro-life members of Congress from New Jersey urged McGreevey to veto the legislation.
In a letter to McGreevey authored by Reps. Chris Smith, Mike Ferguson, and Scott Garrett, they call the bill the "most extreme and ethically flawed pro-cloning legislation in the country."
The bill is A2840/S1909.
ACTION: Contact Governor McGreevey at 609 292-6000 or fax a letter to (609) 292-3454 to express your opinions. You can also email the Governor using the forms found at https://www.state.nj.us/governor/govmail.html
Related web sites:
New Jersey Right to Life – https://www.njrtl.org