Center for American Progress

: Can States Override the Stem Cell Veto
Past Event

Can States Override the Stem Cell Veto

Advancing Stem Cell Research in the Face of Federal Inaction

10:00 AM - 10:00 PM EDT

Can States Override the Stem Cell Veto:
Advancing Stem Cell Research in the Face of Federal Inaction

Keynote Addresses by:
U.S. Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA)
Governor Jim Doyle (D-WI)

Introduction by:
John D. Podesta, President and Chief Executive Officer, Center for American Progress

Moderated by:
Jonathan D. Moreno, Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress

Featured Speakers:
John Gearhart, Ph.D., C. Michael Armstrong Professor of Medicine and Director of the Stem Cell Program, Johns Hopkins Medicine
Bernard Lo, Ph.D., Professor of Medicine and Director of the Program in Medical Ethics, University of California, San Francisco
Dave Scadden, M.D., Director, Center for Regenerative Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital and Co-Director, Harvard Stem Cell Institute, Harvard University

In the wake of President Bush’s veto of the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act, federal action on stem cell research will be delayed at least a year, leaving the states to continue to take the lead on supporting this life-saving research. But how will the research proceed in the current political climate both nationally and locally? Join the Center for American Progress in hearing two of the strongest supporters of stem cell research at the federal and state level, Senator Harkin of Iowa and Governor Doyle of Wisconsin, discuss the future of stem cell research. Following their remarks will be a panel of distinguished experts to discuss the future scientific and ethical implications of legislative action on stem cell research.

from left: Dave Scadden, John Gearhart, Bernard Lo, Jonathan Moreno

Conference Materials




Note: All video provided in QuickTime (MPEG-4) format.

Friday, August 4, 2006
Program: 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Refreshments will be served at 9:30 A.M.
Admission is free

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Senator Tom Harkin was the principal Senate sponsor, along with Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA), of HR 810, the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act.  During more than three decades in Congress – most recently as ranking member on the Labor-HHS Appropriations Subcommittee — he has been an outspoken champion of federally sponsored biomedical research.  Between 1998 and 2003, he teamed up with Sen. Specter to double funding for the National Institutes of Health.  In the current Congress, he has introduced the Healthy Lifestyles and Prevention Act, a comprehensive bill that would refocus America’s health care system to emphasize wellness and disease prevention.  Harkin was born in Cumming, Iowa, on November 19, 1939 to a coal miner father and a Slovenian immigrant mother.  He attended Iowa State University on a Navy ROTC scholarship. He served in the Navy as a jet pilot on active duty from 1962 to 1967, and afterwards continued to fly in the Naval Reserves. He is an active member of American Legion Post 562 in Cumming. In 1972, he graduated from Catholic University of America Law School in Washington, D.C.  He first won election to the U.S. Congress from Iowa’s Fifth Congressional District in 1974.  He was first elected to the Senate in 1984.  Iowans returned him to the U.S. Senate in 1990, 1996 and again in 2002, making him the first Iowa Democrat ever to earn a fourth Senate term.  In 1990, Harkin was chief sponsor of the Americans with Disabilities Act, landmark legislation that protects the civil rights of more than 54 million Americans with physical and intellectual disabilities.

Governor Jim Doyle was sworn in as the 44th Governor of Wisconsin on January 6, 2003. He is the first Democratic Governor of Wisconsin in more than 16 years. Gov. Doyle has proven to be a strong leader, working in a bipartisan way to get Wisconsin back on track. Born on November 23, 1945, to James E. Doyle Sr. and Ruth Bachhuber Doyle, Gov. Doyle and his three sisters grew up in Madison. He is married to Jessica Laird Doyle and they have two adult sons, Gus and Gabe. Gov. Doyle’s parents were founding members of the modern Democratic Party in Wisconsin and he credits them for instilling in him the belief that politics and government are honorable professions, and that public service is a way to improve people’s lives. Gov. Doyle attended Stanford University for three years, then finished his senior year at UW-Madison. He is a 1972 graduate of Harvard Law School. In 1976, Gov. Doyle was elected Dane County District Attorney and served three terms from 1977-82. When he left that office, he spent eight years building his own private law practice until he was elected Wisconsin Attorney General in 1990. Gov. Doyle was reelected as Attorney General in 1994 and 1998.

John D. Podesta is President and Chief Executive Officer of the Center for American Progress and visiting Professor of Law at the Georgetown University Law Center. From October 1998 until January 2001, Podesta served as Chief of Staff to President Bill Clinton, where he was responsible for directing congressional relations and staff activities of the White House. He coordinated the work of cabinet agencies with a particular emphasis on the development of federal budget and tax policy, and served in the President’s Cabinet, and as a Principal on the National Security Council. Podesta has also held a number of positions on Capitol Hill including: Counselor to former Democratic Leader Senator Tom Daschle; Chief Minority Counsel for the Senate Judiciary Subcommittees on Patents, Copyrights, and Trademarks, and Security and Terrorism; and Counsel on the Majority Staff of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Podesta is a graduate of Georgetown University Law Center and Knox College.

Jonathan D. Moreno, Ph.D., is a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress. He is the Emily Davie and Joseph S. Kornfeld Professor of Biomedical Ethics and Director of the Center for Biomedical Ethics at the University of Virginia. Dr. Moreno is a member of the Board on Health Sciences Policy of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies, and of the Council on Accreditation of the Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Programs. He is immediate past President of the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities and was Co-Chair of the National Academies’ Committee on Guidelines for Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research. He is also a bioethics advisor for the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, a Faculty Affiliate of the Kennedy Institute of Ethics at Georgetown University, a Fellow of the Hastings Center and of the New York Academy of Medicine. His forthcoming book Is There an Ethicist in the House? will be published by Indiana University Press in 2006. Among Moreno’s previous books are In the Wake of Terror: Medicine and Morality in a Time of Crisis (MIT Press, 2003); Undue Risk: Secret State Experiments on Humans (Routledge, 2001); and Ethical and Regulatory Aspects of Clinical Research (Johns Hopkins, 2003). He is under contract to the Dana Press for a book tentatively entitled Mind Wars: National Security and the Brain. Moreno has published more than 200 papers, reviews and book chapters, and is a member of several editorial boards. He is an ethics commentator for and is a frequent guest on news and information programs, including ABC World News Tonight, The CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News, NPR’s All Things Considered and Science Friday, Marketplace, MSNBC News, CNN Crossfire, and The McLaughlin Group. He is often quoted in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post and other national publications. Moreno has held full-time faculty appointments at Swarthmore College, the University of Texas at Austin, George Washington University, the SUNY Health Science Center at Brooklyn and has been a Special Expert in the Department of Clinical Bioethics at the Warren Magnuson Clinical Center of the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland. He was a member of the National Human Research Protections Advisory Committee, a senior consultant for the National Bioethics Advisory Commission, and has advised the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. During 1994-95 he was Senior Policy and Research Analyst for the President’s Advisory Committee on Human Radiation Experiments. Moreno received his bachelor’s degree from Hofstra University in 1973, with highest honors in philosophy and psychology. He was a University Fellow at Washington University in St. Louis, receiving his doctorate in philosophy in 1977, and was a Mellon Post-Doctoral Fellow in cooperation with the Aspen Institute for Humanistic Studies. In 1998 he received an honorary doctorate from Hofstra.

Dr. John D. Gearhart is the C. Michael Armstrong Professor of Medicine and Director of the Stem Cell Program, Institute for Cell Engineering at Johns Hopkins Medicine in Baltimore, MD. He is Professor of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Physiology, and Comparative Medicine in the Johns Hopkins University School of School of Medicine and Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in the Bloomberg School of Public Health. Dr. Gearhart earned his doctorate at Cornell University, had fellowship training with Beatrice Mintz at the Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia, and joined the faculty at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in 1979. Dr. Gearhart is a developmental geneticist and his research over the past two decades has been directed at an understanding the molecular and cellular basis of human embryonic development. He has over 240 research publications in developmental genetics. Dr. Gearhart is a leader in the development and use of human reproductive technologies and in the genetic engineering of cells. In 1998, Dr. Gearhart and his research team at Johns Hopkins published a report on the derivation of pluripotent stem cells from human embryos (one of the two that year, the other from Dr. James Thomson at the University of Wisconsin). These cells have the capacity to form all cell types and tissues present in the human body and are considered a major starting point for the development of a wide variety of cell-based therapies in the new field of regenerative medicine. Dr. Gearhart’s current research is focused on the basic science of stem cells, stem cell specialization, and the generation cell-based therapies for several diseases and injuries, including juvenile diabetes, metabolic diseases of the liver, motor neuron loss (Lou Gehrig’s disease), Parkinson’s disease, spinal cord injury, stroke, and heart disease.

Dr. Bernard Lo is Professor of Medicine and Director of the Program in Medical Ethics at the University of California, San Francisco. He is National Program Director for the Greenwall Faculty Scholars Program in Bioethics, a career development award for junior faculty members. He is co-chair of the Standards Working Group of the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine, which will recommend regulations for stem cell research funded by the state of California under Proposition 71. He is also a member of the California Human Stem Cell Research Advisory Committee, which will recommend guidelines for stem cell research carried out in California funded from other sources. He chairs the UCSF committee on Gamete, Embryo, and Stem Cell Research, which oversees all such research. He previously served on the 1994 NIH Advisory Board on Research on Human Embryos and on the California Advisory Commission on Human Cloning (1998-2002). He also serves on the Data and Safety Monitoring Committees for diabetes prevention trials at NIDDK and a HIV vaccine trial at NIAID. He is a member of the Ethics Working Group of the NIH-sponsored HIV Prevention Trials Network, which carries out clinical trials in developing countries. He is co-Director of the Policy and Ethics Core of the Center for AIDS Prevention Studies at UCSF, which provides technical advice and consultation to researchers carrying out clinical research, including research in resource-poor nations. He is a member of the steering committee of the UCSF K-12 Roadmap program that provides training in interdisciplinary clinical research. He is a member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) and serves on the IOM Council. He chaired a NAS/IOM Panel on Ethical Issues in Housing Research on Health Hazards for Children and an IOM panel on confidentiality in health services research. He served on the National Bioethics Advisory Committee (1996-2001) and served the Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee at NIH. He developed a course on Responsible Conduct of Research at UCSF that 120 postdoctoral fellows and junior faculty take each year. He also performs research on ethical issues in human participants research and other topics in bioethics.

Dr. David Scadden is a Professor of Medicine at Harvard University and co-directs the Harvard Stem Cell Institute. He is the director of the Center for Regenerative Medicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital that specifically focuses on bringing stem cell research to bear on understanding and treating human disease. He serves as Chief of the Hematologic Malignancies Program at the MGH Cancer Center. His laboratory discovered molecular switches regulating stem cell proliferation and defined the specialized environment in bone marrow that governs their fate. Dr. Scadden serves on the Board of Scientific Counselors of the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and holds leadership positions in the International Society for Stem Cell Research, the American Society of Hematology, the International Society for Experimental Hematology, the Leadership Council of the Harvard Divinity School, and co-chairs the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Biomedical Research Advisory Council. He is the recipient of the Doris Duke Innovation in Translational Research Award, the Burroughs Wellcome Fund Clinical Scientist Award in Translational Research, a Translational Research Award from the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and the Alan Goldfine Research Chair from the Brain Tumor Society. He is a member of the honorary societies of Alpha Omega Alpha, American Association of Physicians, the American Society of Clinical Investigation, and the Interurban (Sir William Osler) Clinical Club. He serves on multiple editorial and grant review boards. He was a member of the Institute of Medicine panel reporting on “Cord Blood: Establishing a National Cord Blood Stem Cell Bank Program” for Congress and the National Academy of Sciences. He is the former chair of the NCI AIDS Malignancy Consortium and former executive committee member of Harvard’s Division of AIDS. Dr. Scadden is the author of over 200 scientific papers and book chapters on stem cells, cancer, and AIDS.