ANGIE PACCIONE FOR CONGRESS
For Immediate Release
May 2, 2006
Contact: Gary Chandler (970) 308-0986
Paccione-sponsored Resolution Calls for Passage of Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act
Rep. Marilyn Musgrave wants to hinder the search for disease cures
(Fort Collins, CO) State Representative Angie Paccione today called on the federal government to finally support disease-fighting medical research, as the Colorado House passed House Joint Resolution 1034. Originally introduced by Rep. Paccione, the resolution urges the U.S. Senate to act promptly on U.S. Rep. Diane DeGette’s Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act, which overwhelmingly passed the U.S. House last year.
“I sponsored this resolution because I’m worried the U.S. Senate will let this important legislation die of neglect,” said Rep. Paccione, after the resolution overwhelmingly cleared the Colorado House. “That’s unconscionable, especially since Congresswoman DeGette’s careful bill will promote vital research into disease cures, while protecting our values.”
While several Republican state representatives voted for the HJR-1034, including two from U.S. Rep. Marilyn Musgrave’s district—Rep. Bob McCluskey of Fort Collins and Rep. Diane Hoppe of Sterling—Musgrave is against utilizing this innovative technology to cure disease.
“Numerous Republicans realize that this bill is a sensible approach to finding cures,” Paccione said. “Others, like Marilyn Musgrave, put politics before their consituents’ health.”
Scientists are studying embryonic stem cells because of the ability of the cells to adapt into different kinds of tissue, which means doctors may one day treat a whole variety of illnesses. Because they are so versatile, embryonic stem cell research may lead to therapies for Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, stroke, heart disease, birth defects, and spinal cord injuries.
Because such research ultimately destroys the embryo, the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act permits research funding only for fertility clinic embryos that would be discarded anyway, meaning their final status wouldn’t be changed by research, and only with family consent.
“We have an obligation to support the healing of millions of suffering Americans,” Rep. Paccione added, “To delay doing so is to delay saving lives.”
Paccione cited former President Ronald Reagan’s graceful 1994 farewell letter to the American people to emphasize America’s obligation to increasing research. "First Lady Nancy Reagan has been a tireless advocate for stem cell research," said Paccione.
“When President Reagan wrote of Mrs. Reagan’s ‘faith and courage,’ he was asking for our help on her behalf,” Paccione added. “In the words of Nancy Reagan, ‘There are so many diseases that can be cured, or at least helped, that we can’t turn our backs on this. We’ve lost so much time already I can’t bear to lose any more.’ It is our charge to fight these diseases, something that takes moral courage to do.”