Communications Department

NRLC Responds to Ron Reagan’s Pro-Cloning Speech at Democratic National Convention

Jul 28, 2004 | 2004 Press Releases

Ron Reagan, son of former President Reagan, spoke last night at the Democratic National Convention advocating for federal funding of embryonic stem-cell research. Early in his speech, Ron Reagan referred to “the use of embryonic stem cells – cells created using the material of our own bodies.” However, the process that he described is that of creating a human embryo by cloning, then killing that embryo to harvest his or her stem cells.

“President Reagan surely would have opposed creating human embryos to harvest their parts, and so do most Americans,” said Douglas Johnson, Federal Legislative director.

During his presidency, on January 14, 1988, Ronald Reagan himself defended the right to life of human embryos, stating, “I Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America…do hereby proclaim and declare the unalienable personhood of every American, from the moment of conception until natural death…”

Michael Reagan, Ronald Reagan’s other son, recently wrote, “The media should keep in mind that we are also members of the Reagan ‘family’ and my father, as do I, opposed the creation of human embryos for the sole purpose of using their stem cells as possible medical cures….To make matters worse, those arguing for embryonic stem cells have embarked on a campaign of disinformation, claiming that there are scientific reasons for believing that their research can be expected to lead to a cure for Alzheimer’s disease.”

Earlier this week, in an interview that aired on “Hardball with Chris Matthews,” Ron Reagan acknowledged that it is unlikely that those who suffer from Alzheimer’s disease will benefit from the use of embryonic stem-cells. Alzheimer’s, a neurological disease, is the same disease that President Ronald Reagan suffered from until his death.

MATTHEWS: Alzheimer’s. Your dad died of it. It took 10 years to die of it. My mom died. Takes about 10 years. What would stem cells do to those kind of victims beforehand?

REAGAN: Alzheimer’s….

MATTHEWS: Could it save them?

REAGAN: No. No. Alzheimer’s is a disease, ironically, that probably won’t be amenable to treatment through stem cell therapies.

National Right to Life encourages the use of adult stem-cell research which has demonstrated more value to date and does not require the killing of a human being.

National Right to Life is the nation’s largest pro-life organization, with 50 state affiliates and approximately 3,000 local affiliates nationwide. NRLC works through legislation and education to protect those threatened by abortion, infanticide, euthanasia, and assisted suicide.