March 9th, 2009
12:39 PM ET
14 years ago

Nancy Reagan praises Obama's stem cell policy change

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="The former first lady said Monday that many people stand to benefit from the answers stem cell research can provide."]
(CNN) - Former first lady Nancy Reagan issued a statement Monday praising the president's change to federal policy on funding embryonic stem cell research.

Read Reagan's statement after the jump.


I’m very grateful that President Obama has lifted the restrictions on federal funding for embryonic stem cell research. These new rules will now make it possible for scientists to move forward. I urge researchers to make use of the opportunities that are available to them, and to do all they can to fulfill the promise that stem cell research offers.

Countless people, suffering from many different diseases, stand to benefit from the answers stem cell research can provide. We owe it to ourselves and to our children to do everything in our power to find cures for these diseases – and soon. As I’ve said before, time is short, and life is precious.

soundoff (192 Responses)
  1. RealityKing

    Private business, and all of Europe, have spent billions trying to exploit stem cell reasearch for years. And yet only the adult stem cells are showing any signs of producing benefits.

    How many fetus' must progressively die under Obama to prove a point?

    March 9, 2009 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  2. Len in Washington

    She has seen the results of the diseases that this research can help. Congrats to the President.

    March 9, 2009 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  3. Chipster

    These are not babies! They are cells that will never be implanted, never attach in a womb, and will simply be discarded! If you pro-life fanatics really care about life, how about giving a chance to those who are living with terrible diseases that may find a cure in this research? No, adult stem cells do NOT show the same flexibility to regenerate and take the form of its host cell.

    And the Earth is not FLAT! Keep your religious fanaticism to yourself. You can refuse treatment developed using these cells if it really offends you so much.

    March 9, 2009 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  4. Balla23

    In response to please's comment:
    Obama is ruining this country-No, it was already that way when he got into office thanks to Bush 43, but I respect your opinion now I am just giving mine.

    March 9, 2009 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  5. KH in WY

    To Paul

    I’m sorry to see you are so misinformed. These embryonic stem cells are already being sent for destruction. They throw them in the trash. I fail to see why people are up in arms about this. It’s better to use them for research that to just throw them away.

    March 9, 2009 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  6. Tim

    Paul, better than killing the living, breathing, learning, playing children in Iraq who had absolutely nothing to do with al Qaeda-until we invaded their country. Get your facts straight – they aren't living, or breathing. They don't have a birth certificate or social security number.

    March 9, 2009 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  7. KofTX

    Now THIS is going to REALLY start a fire in the Limbaugh/ Hannity wing of the Republican party!

    March 9, 2009 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  8. Shucks

    Pee Wee: Other countries have still been doing embyonic stem cell research, and will probably have more active advancements in the field than we can even imagine since our scientists hands have been tied for the last 8 years. The USA should have been at the forefront of this technology, and could have benefited both financially and academically beyond any other group in the world. Instead, thanks to the religious right and the Bush administration, we are behind all the others in our research and progress.

    March 9, 2009 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  9. Tim

    S. Callhan – thank you...I feel if God didn't want us to be able to do this, he would not have given man the knowledge to be able to develop this.

    March 9, 2009 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  10. Joseph

    Hurray for Nancy. Sound science over blind faith. That's what America needs.

    March 9, 2009 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  11. FreeNLovIt

    As a Christian, I support Obama, but he is truly a liberal. In the end, my loyalty is to God. I dont support his views on abortions, gay rights and stem cells.

    March 9, 2009 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  12. Los

    Look, the conservative mantra of tax cuts and smaller government worked in the 80s because that's what was needed at the time. We now have capitalism run amok, and the GOP (Republicans can't be called conservatives; they've morphed into an ugly caricature of themselves) keeps insisting on applying the same medicine to a different illness. Obama understands that this is not the time for stinginess.

    March 9, 2009 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  13. Chris in MI

    To Diana: I don't get people like you. How is DESTROYING the unused embryos not killing them? It's okay with you that they should be flushed down a toilet, but not used to help millions of people around the world who are suffering? What a hypocritical stance to take. We will indeed lose our brightest minds in science if we don't join the 21st century on this. We need to take advantage of the opportunity to develope new therapies that can help people who are suffering. " If not us...who? If not now...when?"

    March 9, 2009 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  14. Bridget

    Diana, seriously, enough with the whole birth certificate meme. Hawaiian law FORBIDS the release of ANY original birth certificate. So, take up your cause with the Hawaiian legislature to get the law changed. Until then, watch your intelligent President make decisions that will benefit FUTURE Americans while you sit there and wring your hands over embryos that would otherwise be thrown in the GARBAGE. But don't you sit there and presume that my grandkids' or great-grandkids' health is less important than a few cells that will never end up as a baby.

    March 9, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  15. FreeNLovIt

    Whatever you do, dont try to play God. We'll be creating monsters instead. If God cannot control the human character, dont expect to create a perfect human being.

    March 9, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  16. Isabel

    It is about time science is back to help people. The Middle Age years of Bush are OVER.

    March 9, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  17. Los

    "I believe this research should be steered towards developing stem cells from other sources than embryonic. That is the most ethical solution to the embryonic stem cell research dilemma."

    Then you should be 100% behind Pres. Obama, since he specifically mentioned this very same idea in his speech.

    March 9, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  18. Chipster


    No, the Nazis did not do research. They did experiments on people. They didn't try to create anything that would save a single life. Your comparison is an insult that reveals your ignorance of stem cell research and of the Nazi torture chambers.

    March 9, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  19. Balla23

    Highly Favored:
    Are you mad because of the fact that a Republican is supporting President Barack Obama's decision on stem cell research. Science and politics should not be mixed just like separating state from church.

    March 9, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  20. Deborah

    Taxpayers should not be funding this!

    If it where viable private funding would already be doing it!

    March 9, 2009 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  21. Laughing

    How selfish can the republican party be? Is it possible that they can think about anyone else but themselves... it's getting clearer every time they open their mouth. They truly do not love America.. they don't even like it..

    320,000 Vets Have Brain Injuries
    American Military Casualties in Iraq
    American Wounded Official Estimated
    Total Wounded: 31089

    March 9, 2009 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  22. P from the IE

    As a Christian I believe in this research. There is a huge divide between the fundamentalist religious right and other Christians. I do not believe that "human life" begins at conception or in a petri dish. There is much more good to come from this.

    March 9, 2009 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  23. Rick CT

    On this point, Obama is absolutely correct.

    March 9, 2009 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  24. Balla23

    Pee Wee:
    Do you seriously think that the federal funding for stem cell research is just like handing out free money? That's surprising...go back and read the article about the executive order President Obama signed, then repharse your comment from earlier.

    March 9, 2009 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  25. MorningStar

    Many people usually oppose a solution to a problem when that problem has not yet hit home. Once you or a person you love has to deal with that problem, the reality set in, and the solution begins to make a lot of sense. Nancy Reagan know how it is.

    March 9, 2009 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
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