Press Releases

Washington, DCU.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today joined with Senators Harry Reid (D-NV), Tom Harkin (D-IA), and Edward Kennedy (D-MA) to call on Majority Leader Bill Frist to bring up legislation that would increase the number of stem cell lines available for federal funding. This legislation passed the House almost a year ago, but the Senate has not acted.

It has been seven years since I introduced one of the first bills dealing with the ethical issues around stem cell research. But no bill has been passed by the Senate.

It is almost one year since the House passed the Castle-DeGette bill. But the Senate has not acted.

It’s been nine months since the Majority Leader shocked the Senate and announced his support for stem cell legislation. But he has not used his authority as Majority Leader to bring up the bill.

This week has been dubbed “Health Week,” but stem cell research is not on the agenda. The time to act is now.

The price of inaction goes up every day. Since this fight began, we’ve lost Christopher Reeve, we’ve lost Dana Reeve, and we’ve lost countless Americans. Yet, the Senate does nothing.

Every day:

  • 3,835 Americans are diagnosed with Cancer (in 2006).
  • 4,110 Americans are diagnosed with Diabetes (in 2005). 164 American’s are diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease.
  • 29 American’s are diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis.
  • And thousands more are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or suffer spinal cord injuries.

Yet we do not act.

Castle-DeGette has passed the House --a bill to increase the number of stem cell lines available for federal funding. But Senator Frist hasn’t brought it up.So we’re here to call on him to bring up the legislation before the one year anniversary later this month.

So I’m asking all of you for your help. Tell every Senator that you talk to tha…

It’s time for the Senate to pass this bill.

It’s time for a sensible embryonic stem cell policy that promotes research. Not one that is limited to 22 lines that are contaminated by mouse feeder cells.

It’s time to unleash our researchers and encourage them to find cures.

We want to see this legislation go forward so that we can find treatments and cures -- so that we can find treatments and cures for kids with juvenile diabetes, for grandmothers with Alzheimer’s and for people living with Parkinson’s, cancer and spinal cord injuries.

There is no question that this country needs an effective stem cell policy -- both to provide federal funding for viable stem cell lines and to provide federal ethical guidelines.

Passing this bill would go a long way to filling the void created by the President’s existing policy. With this bill, we can bring hope to more than 100 million Americans and their loved ones. It’s as simple as that.”