by Steven Ertelt
April 18, 2006
Madison, WI (LifeNews.com) — A Wisconsin state senator says he wants state officials to put embryonic stem cell research conducted at the University of Wisconsin separated from other research. He wants the scientists and their projects housed in a different building to make sure taxpayer funds which pay for other research aren’t going to the controversial studies.
State Sen. Scott Fitzgerald is concerned that privately funded embryonic stem cell researchers will use facilities or equipment purchased for noncontroversial research with state tax dollars.
At issue is the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery proposed at the UW campus, which will be funded by $50 million in private donations.
UW officials say they will separate the research themselves but Fitzgerald is unhappy, according to a LaCrosse Tribune report. He doesn’t like the design proposal for the new facility because he doesn’t think it will separate the research properly.
"The university’s latest plans call for the state to build two separate facilities," he explained in an op-ed in the Wisconsin State Journal newspaper.
"This sounds good in principle, but under their plan both facilities will exist under the same roof and be connected by walkways and an atrium," Fitzgerald explained.
"To claim these are separate and distinct operations is as false as saying that the state Assembly and Senate have no contact with one another because they’re in separate wings of the Capitol with the Rotunda between them," he added.
Fitzgerald concluded that, because biotechnology is a "a growing part of our state’s economy," more should be done to make sure public funds don’t pay for any portions of research that involves the destruction of human life.