Senate Democrats

DEMOCRATS PUSH REPUBLICANS TO HELP OVERRIDE STEM CELL VETO

Washington, DC–Senate Democrats sent the following letter to Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist,pushing him to show his commitment to the promise of embryonic stem cell research by helping to organize a Congressional override of President Bush’s likely veto of HR 810, the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act.With millions of Americans looking to the Congress for the hope of new treatments and cures for debilitating illnesses, Democrats believe the Republican Congress will be measured in actions, not words.

The text of the letter, signed by 41 Senate Democrats, is below.

July 18, 2006

The Honorable William Frist, M.D.

Majority Leader

United States Senate

Washington, DC 20510

Dear Dr. Frist: 

Earlier today, the Senate approved the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act (H.R. 810) – an important step toward enacting legislation that can bring hope to millions of Americans.  As you know, this important legislation would end the restrictions that have kept stem cell research from fulfilling its potential to save lives and alleviate suffering. 

We are pleased that you supported this important legislation and know that you recognize the enormous potential of this research for discovering new cures and therapies for diseases such as diabetes, Parkinson’s disease and spinal cord injuries.  However, we are deeply disappointed by the prospect that the President will veto this landmark legislation and ask that you urge the President to reconsider this position.  If the President fails to do so, the only chance for overriding this veto rests with you and the Republican caucuses in the House and the Senate.  Since the House will act first on any Presidential veto, we ask that you immediately meet with Speaker Hastert and key members of the House Republican caucus to impress upon them the importance of H.R. 810 and the need to secure the necessary votes from House Republican members to override that veto.  At the same time, we hope that you will exercise your leadership to secure the necessary votes from Senate Republicans to override a veto should the Senate be given an opportunity to do so.

Millions of patients and their families across the nation cannot afford to wait any longer for the enactment of this urgently needed legislation.  We are counting on your leadership to help ensure that this legislation becomes law so that we may finally clear the way for research that could lead to treatments and cures for so many debilitating disease and conditions. 

                                                                        Sincerely,

Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid

Assistant Democratic Leader Dick Durbin

Senator Charles Schumer

Senator Debbie Stabenow

Senator Tom Harkin

Senator Edward Kennedy

Senator Dianne Feinstein

Senator Daniel Akaka

Senator Max Baucus

Senator Evan Bayh

Senator Jeff Bingaman

Senator Barbara Boxer

Senator Maria Cantwell

Senator Thomas Carper

Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton

Senator Mark Dayton

Senator Christopher Dodd

Senator Byron Dorgan

Senator Russ Feingold

Senator Daniel Inouye

Senator Jim Jeffords

Senator Tim Johnson

Senator John Kerry

Senator Herb Kohl

Senator Mary Landrieu

Senator Frank Lautenberg

Senator Patrick Leahy

Senator Carl Levin

Senator Joe Lieberman

Senator Blanche Lincoln

Senator Bob Menendez

Senator Barbara Mikulski

Senator Pattie Murray

Senator Bill Nelson

Senator Barack Obama

Senator Mark Pryor

Senator Jack Reed

John D. Rockefeller

Senator Ken Salazar

Senator Paul Sarbanes

Senator Ron Wyden

###

Bookmark and Share