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Remarks by President Bush on Stem Cell Veto and Executive Order

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And, finally, I'm up here with the McNamara family -- Kaitlyne is with us -- I'm going to talk about her in a second.

I do want to thank the other stem cell patients and researchers and advocates who are here with us today. If you're not in any of those categories you're welcome, too. (Laughter.)

In 2001, I announced a policy to advance stem cell research in a way that is ambitious, ethical, and effective. I became the first President to make federal funds available for embryonic stem cell research -- and my policy did this in ways that would not encourage the destruction of embryos. Since then, my administration has made more than $130 million available for research on stem cell lines derived from embryos that had already been destroyed. We've provided more than $3 billion for research on all forms of stem cells -- including those from adult and other non-embryonic sources.

This careful approach is producing results. It has contributed to proven therapeutic treatments in thousands of patients with many different diseases. It's opening the prospect of new discoveries that could transform lives.

Congress has sent me a bill that would overturn this policy. If this legislation became law, it would compel American taxpayers -- for the first time in our history -- to support the deliberate destruction of human embryos. I made it clear to Congress and to the American people that I will not allow our nation to cross this moral line. Last year, Congress passed a similar bill -- I kept my promise by vetoing it. And today I'm keeping my word again: I am vetoing the bill that Congress has sent. (Applause.)

Destroying human life in the hopes of saving human life is not ethical -- and it is not the only option before us. We're already seeing remarkable advances in the science and therapeutic uses of stem cells drawn from adults and children, and the blood from umbilical cords -- with no harm to the donor. Researchers value embryonic stem
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