Lawmakers Ask Bill Gates Foundation to Fund Embryonic Stem Cell Research

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Aug 7, 2006   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Lawmakers Ask Bill Gates Foundation to Fund Embryonic Stem Cell Research Email this article
Printer friendly page

by Steven Ertelt Editor
August 7, 2006

Washington, DC ( — Two lawmakers who led the effort to force taxpayers to pay for embryonic stem cell research are looking to Microsoft founder Bill Gates to fund the controversial research. Their ploy comes just after President Bush vetoed a bill that would have funded the research, which requires the destruction of human life.

Rep. Diana DeGette, a Colorado Democrat, and Rep. Mike Castle, a Republican from Delaware, are asking the world’s richest man to help them fund embryonic stem cell research.

They want the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which is the world’s largest private charity, to fund a new grant program for the controversial research.

"It seems to fit within the guiding principle of your foundation — every life has equal value," the lawmakers wrote in a letter to the foundation, according to a Denver Post news report.

"This research has the potential to unlock cures and treatments for many devastating diseases affecting hundreds of millions of patients around the world," the letter claimed, even though embryonic stem cell research has yet to help any patients and has failed in animal testing.

The foundation did not respond to the Post about whether it would fund such a program but simply said its health initiatives focus on "diseases that disproportionately affect people in developing countries."

DeGette told the Post that the lawmakers, who sponsored the funding bill Bush vetoed, asked the Gates Foundation to "apply some of their considerable resources to fill in the gap."

She said they did so because, "For the time being, President Bush’s veto has taken the federal government out of the equation of stem-cell research."

However, the Bush administration has spent $90 million on embryonic stem cell research since 2001 and more than $600 million on adult stem cell research during the same time.

In June, investment guru Warren Buffett decided to leave $37 billion dollar fortune to the Gates Foundation, which already had $29 billion at the time.

The Gates foundation has come under fire for giving tens of millions of dollars to Planned Parenthood abortion businesses.

The Gates Foundation has given the Planned Parenthood Federation of America abortion business almost $12.5 million since 1998, including funds to persuade teenagers to support abortion and to lobby the United Nations to advance pro-abortion proposals.

ACTION: Contact the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and urge it to not spend any money funding embryonic stem cell research. Contact: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, PO Box 23350, Seattle, WA 98102, (206) 709-3100, [email protected]