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April 10, 2002
Senator Brownback’s Human Cloning Ban (S. 1899) to Be Debated Soon 
Today, organizations and individuals will lobby Senators to support Senator Sam Brownback’s (R-KS) bill to ban the cloning of human beings in anticipation of a vote that is expected this month. Anti-life liberals are countering with bills by Senators Tom Harkin (D-IA), S. 1893, and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), S.1758.

The Brownback bill bans the cloning of human beings, period.

The Harkin bill allows human beings to be cloned and killed for their stem cells, but prohibits them from being implanted in a womb and allowed to grow.

Opponents of the cloning ban are running newspaper ads in states where Senators either haven’t said where they stand, or in states like Utah, where Senator Orrin Hatch is thought to be supportive of the Harkin bill. The ads are misleading and contain information that is untrue. They say there is a difference between “reproductive” cloning and “therapeutic” cloning.

In fact, there is no difference. A living human embryo is involved, no matter what.

A clone is created through a process called somatic cell nuclear transfer. In the case of Dolly the sheep, an egg was taken from a female sheep and the nucleus, which contains most of the DNA, was removed. A cell was taken from the sheep to be cloned and inserted into the empty egg. An electric probe was used to trigger cell division and an embryo was engendered who was Dolly. In the same way, scientists think they can do this with humans.

Whether the purpose is to create a clone intended for birth ("reproductive") or to create one intended to be used for his or her stem cells ("therapeutic") resulting in death, the clone would be a human embryo entitled to respect and protection. You can’t get human stem cells without taking them from a human being, in this case, a human clone.

Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA) is usually on the side of the pro-abortion lobby. But in this case, she has joined Senator Brownback in sponsoring S.1899. Thus far, she is the only Democrat to do so. “Creating life simply for the purpose of destroying it is immoral, unethical and should be illegal,” she said. “The human body is not a product to be mass produced and stripped for parts.” Senator Arlen Specter (R-PA), a strong supporter of legal abortion, is a major supporter of the Harkin bill which would allow researchers to clone, then kill a human baby, but make it a crime for him to be implanted and carried to term.

President Bush, who has announced his desire to ban the cloning of humans, is expected to make a statement reiterating his position today in the White House Rose Garden. Phyllis Schlafly, national chairman of RNC/Life, will be in attendance along with representatives from many organizations opposing human cloning, both conservative and liberal.

Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-SD) has delayed Senate debate on the cloning issue twice before. It is likely he may try to do that again. Please call your senators and urge them to sign on to the Brownback bill (S. 1899) and to demand that Senator Daschle schedule debate on it. Senator Brownback has said the Senate debate “will be about whether we, as a society, will allow human beings to be mass produced, to pre-ordained specifications, for their eventual implantation or destruction. . . . This issue must be addressed by the senate before the technology overtakes the debate.”

Please contact your senators by calling the White House Switchboard at: 202/224-3121 
Ask them to vote FOR the Brownback bill (S. 1899) and 
vote AGAINST Harkin (S.1893) and Feinstein (S. 1758).

Find out who the pro-life congressional candidates are. Visit our website at: http://www.rnclife.org and click on "Voter's Guide/PAC Report.

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