by Steven Ertelt
March 23, 2006
Topeka, KS (LifeNews.com) — With some senators claiming the legislative body did not have enough information about the science involved, the Kansas Senate on Wednesday rejected a ban on using taxpayer funds in the state budget to pay for any kind of human cloning.
Sen. Tim Huelskamp, a Republican, proposed making sure none of the $11.7 billion in the state budget would go towards the creation of human embryos for reproduction or research.
The proposal specifically indicated none of the money could go to having the state "participate in an attempt to perform human cloning."
According to a Topeka Capital Journal, the amendment would have applied for one year because it would have been attached to the annual budget bill.
However, the newspaper reported some senators objected to the idea and rushed to laptop computers to search information on the Internet during the debate.
The ultimately voted against the proposal on a 25-15 vote.
"We don’t know what we’re doing here today,” Senate Majority Leader Derek Schmidt, a Republican, said, according to the report. "We are debating matters that are beyond the knowledge of nearly every member.”
Huelskamp said the issue was simple: Do lawmakers want to spend money on a practice most Kansans find objectionable.
"I personally find cloning morally offensive,” he said, according to the Topeka newspaper. "Do you want your tax dollars to be used to create human embryos for the purpose of research — to dissect, to cut up, to extract?”
An October 2005 Virginia Commonwealth University poll found 81 percent of Americans either somewhat or strongly opposed to human cloning.
And a May 2005 International Communications Research survey found 75 percent of Americans strongly oppose the use of human cloning for any reason.
When asked whether scientists should "be allowed to use human cloning to create a supply of human embryos to be destroyed in medical research" an overwhelming 77 percent disagreed. Just 15 percent of Americans supported human cloning to advance embryonic stem cell research.
Asked if scientists should "be allowed to use human cloning to try to create children for infertile couples," just 10 percent said yes while 84 percent of Americans said no.