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NRLC Letter to U.S. House of Representatives responding to disinformation by opponents of the Human Cloning Prohibition Act

Jul 30, 2001 | Killing Embryos

(202) 626-8820, Legfederal@aol.com, www.nrlc.org

July 30, 2001

Federal Panels and Researchers Agree: Human Cloning Creates Human Embryos

Dear Member of Congress:

At a press conference today, Congressman Greenwood and Congressman Deutsch asserted that the Greenwood-Deutsch substitute amendment to the Weldon-Stupak bill (H.R. 2505) would allow “therapeutic cloning,” but they asserted that this process would not involve the creation of any human embryos.

This “argument,” if it can be called that, shows a breathtaking lack of candor. For years, federal bio-ethics review bodies have acknowledged that the process of somatic cell nuclear transfer would indeed produce human embryos. For example, President Clinton’s handpicked National Bioethics Advisory Commission acknowledged in its 1997 report Cloning Human Beings, “any effort in humans to transfer a somatic cell nucleus into an enucleated egg involves the creation of an embryo, with the apparent potential to be implanted in utero and developed to term.” [emphasis added]

Earlier this month, Michael West, the head of the major biotech firm Advanced Cell Technology (ACT) of Worcester, Massachusetts, told journalists that the firm intends to start cloning “soon.” As recently as the December 27, 2000 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, three members of the ACT team, including Dr. West, along with bioethicist Ronald Green of Dartmouth University and two other bioethicists, co-authored a major paper on human cloning that freely acknowledged that the method creates human embryos. They wrote, ” . . . because therapeutic cloningrequires the creation and disaggregation ex utero of blastocyst stage embryos, this technique raises complex ethical questions.” [emphasis added]

The attached factsheet includes numerous such admissions from diverse researchers and public bodies. Thus, it is past time for Mr. Greenwood and Mr. Deutsch to drop their disinformation campaign and engage in an honest debate over whether human embryo farms should be allowed in this country. If you oppose the establishment of human embryo farms, vote no on the Greenwood-Deutsch substitute.

Sincerely,
Douglas Johnson
Legislative Director

Categories: Killing Embryos