Compelled by Clonaid’s latest claims crediting itself with the first-born human clone, House representatives Dave Weldon (R-FL) and Bart Stupak (D-MI) on Wednesday reintroduced the Human Cloning Prohibition Act, calling for a total ban on reproductive as well as therapeutic human cloning. The current bill stipulates that violators may face prison sentences as well as fines as high as $1 million, according to the Orlando Sentinel. Already, Weldon and Stupak have received the support of 80 co-sponsors, and the House is expected to consider the legislation in late February or March.
The human cloning bill introduced last year passed the House 263-162; however, the Senate version stalled when some legislators sought exemptions for research purposes. A similar path through the now Republican-controlled Congress is expected.
Opponents to the bill then and now contend that therapeutic cloning—the cloning of specific human cells, genes and other components that alone do not develop into a human being—is critical to finding future treatments and cures for diseases. A spokesman for Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) argued, “It would be unconscionable to stop that research and dash the hopes of [millions of people with incurable diseases],” according Kaisernetwork.org.
The Feminist Majority, along with other advocates, believes that cloning research should continue unheeded, because cloned embryos are the ideal source of stem cells, which are used for researching new treatments and cures for many diseases.
Human cloning is currently banned in the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. The US, France, and Germany are presently reviewing legislation.
Media Resources: FoxNews 1/9/03; Salon 1/8/03; Kaisernetwork.org 1/9/03; Orlando Sentinel 1/9/03; Feminist Daily Newswire
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .