Saturday, December 13, 2008

Missouri Round Table for Life

This was a very informative meeting that I went to last night. I must say, that when it comes to political things, there is usually money at the heart of it. In this case, a good question to ask is "Why did the cloners spend $30 Million on Amendment 2"? This amendment was called "Missouri Stem Cell Research And Cures Initiative."

Here is what the ballot summary said:

Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to allow and set limitations on stem cell research, therapies, and cures which will:

* ensure Missouri patients have access to any therapies and cures, and allow Missouri researchers to conduct any research, permitted under Federal law;

* ban human cloning or attempted cloning;

* require expert medical and public oversight and annual reports on the nature and purpose of stem cell research;

* impose criminal and civil penalties for any violations; and

* prohibit state or local governments from preventing or discouraging lawful cell research, therapies, and cures?

The proposed constitutional amendment would have an estimated annual fiscal impact on state and local governments of $0-$68,916 And it notes that the initiative does not ask for or require and state or taxpayer funding for stem cell research.

What I learned, is that in the state of Missouri, much of what they were trying to do was already legal, except that tax payer money could not be used for abortions, human cloning or stem cell research. That these things must be done through private funding sources.

So, we have to then figure out why did they do this? What was their point? The Life Sciences Research Trust Fund was already going to get 25% of Missouri State's tobacco settlement every year. The huge amount that the tobacco defendants must pay is $4,500,000,000 per year with annual increases until 2018 when the payment then reaches $9,000,000,000 per year and then pays at that amount forever. So, the Life Sciences Trust Fund will receive $764,150,000 through 2025.

The citizens will have no say about how this money is spent. There will be seven private citizens appointed by the governor that will decide.

There is much much more then this, and to fully understand it, I would suggest that you call 314-854-1381 and ask for a booklet, or come and see me to get one.

The part that made me the most upset, was to see that the amendment actually does allow for public funds, which includes taxpayers money to be used for human cloning, harvesting stem cells from human embryos, implant human embryos from in vitro fertilization and then abort them at any stage of development to harvest their stem cells, and to purchase by reimbursement eggs for somatic cell nuclear transfer from women.

There is absolutely NO legislative oversight, the funds cannot decrease for this funding, and must always increase because any decrease is now unconstitutional.

It also forces all Missouri laws, statutes, ordinances, and regulations must be construed to be in favor of human cloning.

And on top of that, the fiscal cost will be over $3 billion by 2025 with increasing costs beyond that.

I KNOW that those that are fiscally conservative here in Missouri would have voted no had they know the real story here. I know that those that believe in protecting life would have voted no. This amendment passed under the pre-tense that it banned human cloning, which it does not do. I cannot tell you how upset this made me. I am so tired of seeing misleading ballot summaries in our elections here. I KNOW that Missourians would make different choices at the ballot boxes if the summaries really referred to the true wording and power of the initiatives.

I hope that the town hall meetings that they are having across the state will be well attended so that people can become more informed. When looking at our State budget, it looks like we will have a deficit in 2010, which is against Missouri's Constitution, plus plain stupid economically. We cannot afford to have any public money going to things like this, when we are going to need it to just keep things running.

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