Newt Gingrich Moves Further Right on Stem Cell Research
In case you thought Newt Gingrich could go no further than he already had in chumpdom, you’d be mistaken. This past weekend, speaking at a Baptist church in Florida and attempting to woo the Evangelical voters that make up a significant portion of the electorate, Newt declared his opposition to stem cell research and called for an investigation into certain practices of in vitro fertilization.
But he didn’t simply express disagreement with the research; he went so far as to declare stem cell research “the use of science to desensitize society over the killing of babies.” We wonder if, running as a “Reagan conservative”, Newt would say that directly to Nancy Reagan, a well-known proponent of stem cell research.
As he told the crowd on Saturday, “If you have in vitro fertilization, you are creating life; therefore, we should look seriously at what the rules should be for clinics that are doing that, because they are creating life.” But just a few years ago, under Republican President George W. Bush, Newt expressed his belief that there “ought” to be federally funded research with stem cells. It’s yet another sad reminder of how far to the right the Republican presidential candidates have moved.
For someone who professes the importance of “family values” Newt has no problem supporting positions that could ban certain practices of in-vitro fertilization, denying many couples the chance to become pregnant. His policy on stem cells would include shutting down valuable research labs, where they work to develop lifesaving cures to a variety of illnesses and injuries, including juvenile diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and spinal cord injuries.
If Newt really cares about families, maybe he should reconsider his position before commissioning ethics investigations into the use of stem cells from fertility clinics.