Friday, July 11, 2008

Consumer Watchdog: Despite Apology, Klein Still Should Still Resign

The Consumer Watchdog group today said it is not withdrawing its call for the resignation of Robert Klein as chairman of California's $3 billion stem cell agency, despite an apology from his lobbying group for its personal attack on a Democratic state legislator.

John M. Simpson, stem cell project director of Consumer Watchdog of Santa Monica, Ca., said the co-executive directors of Klein's lobbying organization, Americans for Cures, "are taking the blame" for the posting on an influential national political blog, Daily Kos. Simpson said on his group's blog,
"What this incident underscores is how inappropriate it is for Klein to hold  positions as chairman of the California stem cell agency and president of a stem cell advocacy group simultaneously.  If he wants to be an advocate -- and he can indeed be effective as the passage of Proposition 71 demonstrates -- he must step down from his position as chairman of the stem cell board.

"The welcomed staff apology does not change the fundamental confict Klein faces by insisting on holding both positions."

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