Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Arnold Nixes CIRM Legislation

Despite overwhelming bipartisan legislative support, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has vetoed legislation aimed at ensuring affordable access to stem cell therapies as the result of taxpayer-funded research.

His veto message said:
"This bill (SB1565)undermines the express intent of Proposition 71 in two ways: it eliminates the priority for funding human embryonic stem cell research and it places an unnecessary restriction on the Independent Citizens’ Oversight Committee authority to adopt intellectual property regulations that balance patient need and essential medical research.

"More than seven million voters were very clear when they passed Proposition 71 in 2004. They wanted to fund embryonic stem cell research that the federal government wouldn’t. They also wanted to make sure that California receives a return for its historic investment in medical research. Both of those important goals are already being accomplished.

"This bill does nothing to advance the will of over seven million voters. For this reason, I am unable to sign this bill."
Only a handful of lawmakers voted against the bill, which required 70 percent approval of both houses of the Legislature.

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