TESTIMONY OF MISSOURI RIGHT TO LIFE
On behalf of Missouri Right to Life, I submit the following testimony in opposition to HB 1583.
It is the mission of Missouri Right to Life (MRL) to protect every innocent human life at every stage of development. It is the threat to embryonic human life that brings us here to testify today.
While Missouri Right to Life is not averse to economic development and ethical research, when that development is built on the destruction of innocent human life at the embryonic stage, MRL will speak up.
If you do not exclude those businesses that seek to use our public dollars for human cloning and embryonic stem cell research within the language of HB 1583, then you put forth intent not to oppose public monies, tax credits or incentives to be used for human cloning and embryonic stem cell research.
HB 1583 has the same concerns as discussed in past years regarding pharmaceuticals and biomedical research with no pro-life protective language to prevent human cloning, human embryonic stem cell research and research on aborted babies with public tax dollars and tax incentives. The pharmaceutical and biomedical industries have engaged in unethical medical research, including the killing of embryos and fetuses so our concerns are real. And, they have made no secret about seeking public tax dollars to do this unethical research.
Our legislators need to give clear direction as to what kind of research can and cannot be done with public monies awarded by The Missouri Technology Corporation. The Missouri Technology Corporation has been tied to the bio tech life sciences research industry from its inception.
Setting up any fund through our state budget for another commission or organization to approve state funding for businesses that can do life science research projects without any pro-life restrictions is a serious concern of Missouri Right to Life. Matching funds with state tax credits for individuals who give to businesses that do human cloning and embryonic stem cell research would be an incentive offered by the State of Missouri to encourage businesses to do human cloning and embryonic stem cell research.
If there is no intent to give public monies, tax credits or incentives to businesses that do human cloning, embryonic stem cell research and research on aborted babies then the following pro-life protections should not be a problem. We are confident that restrictions are necessary in today’s climate for pharmaceutical and biomedical research companies especially when we are talking about the use of any public (state or federal) monies.
Missouri Right to Life recommends the following language to assure that innocent human beings are not the victims of unethical research with state monies or incentives:
Public funds shall not be expended, paid, or granted to or on behalf of an existing or proposed research project that involves abortion services, human cloning, or prohibited human research as defined in section 196.1127.
Missouri Right to Life opposes any economic development legislation that includes only a reporting requirement for this life-destroying research or claims to have pro-life protections on any other bill, including appropriations.
As to the reporting requirement, this position ignores the fact that you ask those doing human cloning and embryonic stem cell research to self-report, the reporting requirement does not cover the fact that the definition of human cloning was changed in our constitution by the adoption of Amendment 2 so any report may not include the creation of human embryos through somatic cell nuclear transfer (human cloning) for scientific research, and the fact that reporting is after the fact of the loss of the lives of unknown numbers of innocent human beings.
As to having language in a separate bill, such as appropriations for the Department of Economic Development, pro-life protections on one line item does not cover all programs in statute.
Until the above pro-life protections are addressed, Missouri Right to Life must take a position in opposition to HB 1583.