President Obama signed an order today allowing federal taxpayer dollars to fund expanded embryonic stem cell research, reversing a George W. Bush policy viewed by many as blocking development of potentially life-saving medical treatment. Obama said he was ending what he believed was "a false choice between sound science and moral values" and opening the road for important medical research.
Obama urged Congress to follow up with legislation that would lift a further ban on experiments that create new embryos. He closed the door to cloning of embryos for human reproduction, and issued a slap at the Bush administration in declaring that politics not science had driven its policy. Today's order, Obama said, "is about ensuring that scientific data is never distorted or concealed to serve a political agenda and that we make scientific decisions based on facts, not ideology."