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Initiative is labeled deceptive2007-08-22 18:47:03cfarrow

The petition initiative launched today by a Kansas-based organization is deceptive and threatens efforts to find cures for diseases such as Parkinson’s and diabetes in Missouri. Last year Missourians passed some of the strongest protections for ethical medical research anywhere. As a result, Missouri’s constitution already bans human cloning. But it also safeguards hope for cures for devastating diseases and injuries that affect over half of all Missouri families. This initiative is fundamentally deceptive. It is anti-patient, anti-hope, anti-cures and completely unnecessary. These anti-cures zealots are masquerading as pro-stem cell advocates while banning some of the most promising stem cell research and potentially lifesaving stem cell cures. We do know that the agenda of its supporters is hostile to even some of the most basic medical research and procedures that Missouri families take for granted. The proponents of this petition effort are using the ‘cloning’ argument to hide their true agenda, which goes even beyond banning stem cell research that Missouri citizens support. Voters did their part on Novemer 7. Today, groundbreaking research is moving forward in Missouri and patients, families and doctors are free to make medical decisions. Missouri’s constitution now guarantees equal access to stem cell research, treatment and cures allowed under federal law and available to other Americans. It also makes any attempt to clone a human being a felony crime, punishable by up to 15 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. We will fight any effort to take our state backward and undo the protections now guaranteed by the Missouri constitution. The Missouri Coalition for Lifesaving Cures, is a grassroots group which includes more than 100 leading patient and medical organizations and more than 60,000 Missouri citizens. Our coalition will aggressively work to protect those constitutional guarantees for all Missourians.--Donn Rubin, chairman, Coalition for Lifesaving Cures