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March 9th, 2009
05:00 PM ET

Pres. Obama's stem cell reversal = distraction from economy?

ALT TEXT Stem cell cultures are held up in a lab. (PHOTO CREDIT: SANDY HUFFAKER/GETTY IMAGES)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Some Republicans are calling President Barack Obama's reversal on embryonic stem-cell research a distraction from the economic slump.

Congressman Eric Cantor, the Republican whip, says the economy is "job number one. Let's focus on what needs to be done." Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich tells the Washington Post that the president's move is an "ideological sideshow" that's taking the focus off the worsening economy. Gingrich says that it's "dangerous" for the administration to "pick a wide series of fights."

But, the White House says that funding embryonic stem cell research is part of the administration's plan to jolt the economy; with scientific and technological advances furthering the overall goals of creating jobs. It was also a campaign promise President Obama made.

He signed the executive order today repealing a Bush-era policy that limited tax dollars for embryonic stem cell research. Many hope that science will eventually help find cures for everything from Parkinson's disease to diabetes, cancer and spinal cord injuries. Also, President Obama's move is part of a larger effort to separate science and politics - a line many believe was blurred under President Bush.

In addition to calling the move a distraction, other Republicans - like House Minority Leader John Boehner - say the president has rolled back important protections for innocent life and further divided the country. Much like the economic stimulus package, the stem cell debate is a way for Republicans to try and shore up their conservative base. Yet with approval ratings for the GOP at their lowest level ever - lotsa luck!

Here’s my question to you: Some Republicans say President Obama's stem cell reversal is a distraction from the economy. Are they right?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

James from Chuckey, Tennessee writes:
The stem cell reversal is a distraction only for people who believe that religious fundamentalists should be allowed to block scientific research and medical care. It's time to tell our homegrown Taliban that they are no longer relevant.

Dane writes:
I guess the Republicans know a thing or two about distractions. Weren't they the ones that gave us proposed constitutional amendments on gay marriage and flag burning when the rest of the country was trying to focus on the unfathomable speed at which the Iraq war was going down the toilet?

Mike from Glenmoore, Pennsylvania writes:
Jack, I don't think the president is causing a distraction from our economic woes by simply spending a few seconds signing a document to clear the way for scientific research. Rather, it's the Republicans who are trying to use the stem cell story to distract from the fact that their party has no economic solutions and has become a party of extreme right-wing whiners.

David from Alexandria, Virginia writes:
Anything which is not focused like a laser beam on the economy and banking system is a distraction as far as I am concerned. Pretty much everything else can and should wait.

Lisa from Ohio writes:
Jack, I wonder if Newt Gingrich would be calling this an "ideological sideshow" if his child or grandchild was paralyzed from a spinal cord injury? If any of the Republican critics lived my life for a week, they may think differently. This can be a priority, along with the economy. There are people and their families who are desperate for a cure for many debilitating conditions. They deserve a chance for hope.

Chuck from Warren, Ohio writes:
Jack, Look at the stocks of research companies today: up 40%. The Republicans would rather we just die off so we won't keep voting them out of office.

Jack from Nice, California writes:
Jack, Anything said by what’s left of the Republican Party is a distraction from reality.


Filed under: Economy • President Barack Obama
soundoff (739 Responses)
  1. Bill

    We are now creating life to destroy it.

    Is this President, the anti-Christ?

    Do Americans care anymore that our morals are falling by the wasteside?

    March 9, 2009 at 12:54 pm |
  2. George from NYC

    Right now, I think we could use some distraction from the economy. Something else to talk about will keep our minds off of just how depressing the economy is.

    Plus, it's a much less destruuctive destraction than the one Bush used in 2003 when they lost Bin Laden.

    March 9, 2009 at 12:55 pm |
  3. Kathy

    It's only a distraction if the Republican Party says it is! These days it seems they're a distraction in & of themselves....

    March 9, 2009 at 12:56 pm |
  4. Randy

    No, I think the benefits that society and the economy will see from research and development that comes from this will be worth any flak that the Obama administration takes. This will save lives and improve the lives of millions of others in the near future.

    March 9, 2009 at 12:58 pm |
  5. Arlene

    Jack,

    This is no more a distraction than any of the other Bush policies President Obama has reversed in the last 6 weeks. This is what he campaigned on. What he's doing is taking care of the "Low Hanging Fruit". People who know how to multi-task do this kind of thing all the time. We just hadn't seen it from our President over the past 8 years.

    Arlene in Atlanta

    March 9, 2009 at 1:01 pm |
  6. Shawn from Phoenix,Az

    Jack-The republicans are just mad because it's another thing their "base" will cry to them about, and hold against them in the next election.
    It also means science and common sense are making a comeback!

    March 9, 2009 at 1:04 pm |
  7. Dennis in Grand Rapids, MI

    Not at all, he's just fufilling one of his campaign promises. In the end if it helps stimulate the economy, then it's a good thing. This research shouldn't have been blocked in the first place.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:04 pm |
  8. Casey in Sebastopol, CA

    Why does the media insist upon attaching negative intentions to every thing the new administration is doing? I realize that you guys want to keep your job, too, but do you have to do it by creating imaginary conspiracies?

    Isn't there enough news to cover? Frankly, I don't appreciate the media's self-serving hoopla generating "stimulus" package. Let my President do his job and keep his promises without the backseat driving, please.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:04 pm |
  9. Charles, Lansing, MI

    Those Republicans continue to put politics above science. They are obstructionists who have no place in Washington. They're brain developments are in the embryonic stage.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:05 pm |
  10. Ron K.

    Hi Jack:

    No, I doubt any one issue could distract anyone from this economy.

    Ron San Diego

    March 9, 2009 at 1:05 pm |
  11. Kevin in Dallas, TX

    We could use the distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:07 pm |
  12. jim form sunrise beach missouri

    They're makeing it a distraction. They've all been on tv today with they're "moral outrage". They need to answer the question a friend of mine asked me. If you were in a burning building and there was a small child and a stack of petri dishes with embryos. Which would you save. MAKE SURE YOUR CONVICTIONS DON'T COST YOU OR SOMEONE ELSE ONE OF THEIR CHILDREN.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:09 pm |
  13. Ken in NC

    Jack, if you are a Republican, the right answer is YES. President Obama getting out of bed every morning is a distraction from the economy if you are a Republican. Since they offer no viable solutions they can only offer "NO" to every attempt to recover the economy.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:09 pm |
  14. Hugh ~ Tracy, California

    No, Eric Cantor is the negative distraction. This "distraction" as Cantor suggests will create thousands of American jobs and ultimately save human lives. Many critics of Obama's decision to promote stem cell research will one day benefit from this very technology that they now vehemently oppose.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:09 pm |
  15. Conor in Chicago

    How is this a distraction? It's not like this issue is going to take up undo time in his administration. He signed the reversal and then moved on to another topic-likely the financial situation. Certain Republicans really need to get with the program.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:12 pm |
  16. Tom in Dubuque Iowa

    Nope; just reversing more GOP mistakes of the last Eight years; sort of amazing when the enlightened have a chance to pursue the fruits of scientific advancement, versus staying in the dark ages.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:12 pm |
  17. Dean in Pa

    Jack,

    No, this should have been done years ago.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:12 pm |
  18. Audrey Glover West Point Ga.

    I am so sick and tired of the Republicans complaining about each and every thing President Obama is doing. They are the distractions. President Obama has told the nation he can do more than one thing at a time .The President is working on the economy while doing other things that need to be addressed to get us out of this mess the Republicans have gotten us into with their one track mind .Let progress prevail.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:13 pm |
  19. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Jack: No---Every and all things are distractions when it comes to Congress--its call "denial."

    March 9, 2009 at 1:14 pm |
  20. JR in Norfolk VA

    Absolutely. Be on the lookout for more stunts like this as the economy continues to worsen and our elected officials declare their bankrupcy for ideas on how to get out of it. Bread and circuses.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:15 pm |
  21. Ray in Nashville

    No, but if they keep saying it, they don't have to talk about how bad the Bush administration messed up this country.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:15 pm |
  22. Roland West

    Nothing can distract public focus from the economy. What I see as happening is the distinct contrast between this and the previous administration. This one, taking action on some of the many things promised during his campaign, in open light of national view. The previous, skulking behind closed doors, masking all their dispicable acts with claims of national security and the war on terror.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:16 pm |
  23. Michael and Diane Phoenix AZ

    Not a distraction. Bush never should have put a ban on stem cell research to begin with.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:16 pm |
  24. Richard, Syracuse, NY

    This is NOT a distraction. If Federal Funds are used for the research than the research becomes Public Domain and open to others to use it to create a product that will help people.

    With no Federal Funds the company that produces a product can patent it and make Billions while pricing most Americans away from buying the products that could truly help them.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:19 pm |
  25. TennesseeFrost

    Not at all... taking care of Americans from all sides.. isn't it great..

    A president that works.. Every week.. he's worked ..

    CHANGE... wasn't just a word

    March 9, 2009 at 1:21 pm |
  26. Gigi in Alabama

    How can you possibly be distracted from our disasterous economy? All President Obama is doing is reversing a dumb law and a dumb idea from George Bush and company. If this can help find cures for so many diseases, then why not try it? Looks like a no brainer to me.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:21 pm |
  27. gail craig. Plano texas

    Jack: Distraction from the economy Republicans say regarding the President's reversal if the stem cell research project? I am eternally grateful to the President for moving forward in this area. I keep thinking of Christopher Reeve who might have benefited from stem cell treatment. Bravo President Obama! And Republicans, please Hush! Look forward to reading your new book, Jack.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:22 pm |
  28. KB from Columbus, Ohio

    President Obama's stem cell reversal will create jobs in an industry that could, in turn, help save lives. All the Republicans are proving by vehemently opposing this reversal in policy is that they're (a) more governed by their morals than their brains, and (b) that they don't support finding cures for seemingly incurable diseases that affect a good portion of the American people. Republicans need to get with it, or in a few years, we won't have any in Congress at all.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:22 pm |
  29. Doug from Bloomington IN

    NO. He is just reversing a stupid policy put in place by President Bush, Stem cell research can lead to treatments and cures for quality-of-life-reducing conditiond like Parkinson's, Alzheimers, spinal injury and many others.

    For the life-threatening diseases such as cancer, we will begin to run into population control issues. If noone dies, then we would have a huge problem. So sensible reproductive practice will need to be "think-tanked" for solutions.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:30 pm |
  30. Terry from North Carolina

    Jack
    Maybe the Obama train is going too fast and skipping some stations. Lets stay focused on the economy which everyone agrees is our biggest problem. We need to get people back to work. The stem cell issue can wait.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:37 pm |
  31. Cori

    Absolutely not – I think stem cell research is important and I'm happy to see Obama overturn Bush's old policy.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:37 pm |
  32. Paul Austin,Texas

    Not at all Jack this was part of his agenda and like he said a President needs to do more than one thing at a time and handle many problems at once. The Republicans are the real distraction and problem maybe they got used to a I can only think about one thing at a time President the past 8 years. Obama's stem cell reversal is long over due.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:39 pm |
  33. Jay in Texas

    No, those Republicans are a distraction. They are pretending that our economic crisis is the only "crisis" we face. I've got news for them. Our soldiers are still fighting illegal and unwinnable wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that have cost over 5,000 young Americans' lives and have permanently disabled tens of thousands more! Hopefully, some of these brave people can benefit from stem cell science. Anyone in Congress who is whining about the economy, mostly Big Corporations not making enough $billions, need reminding that we have many other national problems that must be addressed and remedied. The erosion of our constitutional rights is another area that needs to be corrected and corrected NOW.
    Brownwood, Texas

    March 9, 2009 at 1:39 pm |
  34. Anthony Smith

    Jack;
    It may be a distraction to the Republicans. To the people waiting to die and looking for hope, they won't consider it so. When you hit a brick wall, look for another door that opens out!

    Wildwood Crest, NJ

    March 9, 2009 at 1:40 pm |
  35. Michael, AL

    Apparently Jack, the Republicans who say that he is distracting them are just stubborn. These guys are just running their mouths to the press largely because they are distracted themselves.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:44 pm |
  36. Katiec Pekin, IL

    For crying out loud, Jack. You must be watching CNN too much.
    President Obama is fulfilling a promise he made that will be
    very beneficial to society.
    What positive thing have the republicans said about ANYTHING our
    President has done? If their "focus on the economy" contained any
    solutions then maybe we would pay attention.
    Imagine this will not get posted but worth a try.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:44 pm |
  37. gerry in toronto

    For Republicans it probably is a distraction since they have proven they can't even handle one thing at a time without screwing up.

    But frankly it will create jobs and soon, one can imagine a clone of Jack Cafferty-think about that.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:45 pm |
  38. Chad from Los Angeles, CA

    I appreciate any disctractions from the economy, because Alcohol does not always do the trick to get my mind off financial problems. Thanks Mr. President.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:48 pm |
  39. Allen L Wenger

    These Republicans are just mad that President Obama was able to do it so quickly and easily. These same Republicans wanted it to be done by congress; which would have been a huge sistraction, taken months, and maybe it would have been killed in the senate. I think President Obama avoided a distraction by doing this as an executive order.

    Mountain Home ID

    March 9, 2009 at 1:49 pm |
  40. Barbara - NC

    Why are you wasting your time on a republican talking point?

    I think them claiming it's a distraction is a distraction to the hundreds of billions Cheney/Bush let "disappear" (probably into their off-shore accounts for their retirement).

    The repubs are playing politics, while the President is trying to clean up their mess with no suggestions from them - only criticism and talking points issued by Limbaugh/Rove types.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:53 pm |
  41. Tom Huntington, NY

    The GOP wants it to be a distraction from the economy because they have nothing to offer on that issue except more tax cuts for the rich. Stem cell research allows them to climb back on their moral high horse to claim "This isn't about politics. " when in reality that is exactly what it is about.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:55 pm |
  42. Ryan

    Jack, I sure hope so, I am tired of hearing the doom and gloom.

    March 9, 2009 at 1:58 pm |
  43. tom

    this should have been done a long time ago

    March 9, 2009 at 2:02 pm |
  44. Robert in Galveston

    What distraction? Do you really believe that the american people can't keep more than one thought in our minds? Stem cell research has the potential to cure diseases that have cursed mankind for thousands of years but our 'Bury their head in the sand" religeous right wing would have us believe that a single cell is more important then alevating suffering. Wake up folks, this is the 21st century not the 10th.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:02 pm |
  45. Eric Godfrey

    It is definitely a distraction away from the economy that Barack is continuing to cripple. I think that both sides of this issue have the right to dispute their oppinions, but to have all the tax payers fund this is absolutely crazy. Obama is going to put this country in a position that it will never be able to recover from.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:02 pm |
  46. Mike S., New Orleans

    This is one of the pettiest accusations yet leveled at Obama. It seems that the Republicans who are morally and intellectually bankrupt have nothing better to do than nitpick. What was Obama supposed to say? "Oh wait, I better not sign this now, even though I believe in it, because Rush Limbaugh might say I'm taking focus from the economy" Let's get real Jack.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:04 pm |
  47. David,San Bernardino,CA.

    If stem cell research provides American jobs for Americans then go for it. Right now we need everything we can get.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:05 pm |
  48. Jackie in Dallas

    Definitely NOT! Stem cell research could well be the answer to a lot of medical situations costing patients, states, and the Feds an enormous amount of money, and it is essential to get the politics out of the way of science in order for it to progress. He must multitask, because the economy is not the only problem facing this nation!

    The exec order on stem cell use was an ill-conceived order on President Bush's part, and I admire Nancy Reagan for standing up to him on the issue. President Obama is showing that, once again, he prefers to use intelligence rather than "feelings" about making decisions.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:05 pm |
  49. Dennis North Carolina

    NO, just needed science for medical cures.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:09 pm |
  50. Donna Wisconsin

    It was a campaign promise. How many campaign promises has he kept now? I give him 5 stars for all these kept promises. Way To Go!

    March 9, 2009 at 2:10 pm |
  51. Steven Bradley

    Jack,
    What do you call Bush's topping-off of our strategic oil reserve when it was $140 per barrel, dumb or evil? The stem-cell research will give Wall Street speculators somewhere else to place their bets rather than sand-bagging prices of stuff we all depend on. Besides, over the past few decades PHARMA doesn't seem interested in curing anything anyways.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:12 pm |
  52. Bcoz, Ont Canada

    Jack, up here in Canada we have been some what ahead of the US, and also great results in this field have been achieved. Canadian researchers have been pioneers in the area of stem cell research and continue to lead the way using animal models. With the introduction of Guidelines, Canadian researchers are now able to move forward and remain at the forefront of their field while conducting their research according to explicit ethical standards. Funding agencies, Research Ethics Boards, and universities now have a framework to guide their evaluation and approval decisions.

    Canadians can be assured that the research made possible by federal public funds will be undertaken within a well-defined ethical and legal framework.

    Your President’s move on this can only improve on what other countries are always doing.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:14 pm |
  53. Terry in Hanover County

    It's only a distraction because the far-right, Rush Limbaugh-loving GOP is making it one. President Obama kept his promise on this and even Nancy Reagan approves.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:14 pm |
  54. Ralph in Orange Park, FL

    It is a Republican attempt to distract attention from the fact that their policies caused the economy to tank in the first place.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:19 pm |
  55. Judie from St. Augustine, Florida

    Jack,

    Some Republicans are hoping that we will hear what they are saying and believe them. Guess what, we hear them, we don't believe them and we know that they are full of beans, Why can't they be positive and work towards solutions instead of being jerks?

    Judie
    St. Augustine, Fl

    March 9, 2009 at 2:21 pm |
  56. Craig in Palm Springs

    The republicans don't know what they are saying right now. They have no positive message whatsoever and only want to speak hatred and discuss policies which will set us back further as they did in unison with George W. Bush.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:22 pm |
  57. Janet, Yosemite Gateway, California

    No, they're not right.
    The Republicans are KING of distractions and diversions.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:27 pm |
  58. Sue -Idaho

    Jack, No, this is very important, the stem cell debate is so far out I can hardly listen to GOPERS speak about it. These cells will either stay frozen or be thrown out. How better to use them then to try and use them to cure spinal cord injuries, MS, Parkinsons, or any other disease that they can be made useful for. The distraction comes from the GOP and their constant faux outrage about this.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:27 pm |
  59. Ann from Charleston, S.C.

    First, I do not think President Obama's stem cell reversal is a distraction from the economy. The President made a campaign commitment to reverse Bush's executive orders on stem cell research. The Republicans are engaging in their usual rant and rhetoric to see if something sticks.
    Secondly, if it were a distraction it would be a welcome diversion from the doom and gloom we keep hearing. I'm looking forward to Brian William's broadcast with some good news – sent in by viewers.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:28 pm |
  60. Tony from Torrington

    Absolutely.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:28 pm |
  61. Tom, Avon, Me, The Heart of Democracy

    Once gene therapies gained from stem cell research become available to cure MS and other diseases, the health care costs will be greatly reduced. Once we eliminate the high cost of diseases we will be able to get the economy rolling

    March 9, 2009 at 2:29 pm |
  62. Leigh (Minneapolis, Minnesota)

    I don't think it's a distraction – it is just one topic among many, including the economy, that the President must address. To be the President, you must be a professional multi-tasker, and you must have the ability to avoid being "distracted" by the multitude of responsibilities on your plate at any given point in time.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:29 pm |
  63. Bill in South Jersey

    Yes, distraction from the economy.

    And application to real life.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:33 pm |
  64. Tina Tx

    Good grief. The stem cell should have never been cancelled. We could be almost to finding a cure for so many diseases. The Republicans need to hush up.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:34 pm |
  65. Donna Colorado Springs,Co

    This is not a distraction in any way. This should have happened a long time ago, and would have if Mr. Bush had not let the Christian conservatives run the white house! I say that it's about time!

    March 9, 2009 at 2:35 pm |
  66. Denny from Tacoma, WA

    No they are not right. In truth if stem cell research is successful in finding ways to improve our health, it can actually create more jobs to stimulate the economy

    March 9, 2009 at 2:35 pm |
  67. Pablo in Tejas

    Jack
    distraction my Aunt Fanny! It's like the man says: A President has to be able to do more than one thing at a time, and Jack, for my money Obama is The Man.

    Pablo
    in Arlington Texas

    March 9, 2009 at 2:38 pm |
  68. Gary of El Centro, Ca

    The economy is still the primary focus of the President and his team, but that doesn't mean he shouldn't take care of other pressing matters at the same time. We have the luxury now of having a President that can do more than one thing at a time without screwing them all up. Refreshing!

    March 9, 2009 at 2:41 pm |
  69. Allan Hanson Placerville, Ca

    NO, it is the first step in the right direction.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:42 pm |
  70. Bob in Lincoln NE

    If Obama wanted to create a distraction from the economy there are many ways to do that and stem cell research is not one of them. The fact is that Obama's action may in fact stimulate the economy of the research community by permitting a long overdue use of stem cells to try to find a treatment for a wide variety of diseases. The "do nothing" Republican Party needs to be reminded that our current economic problems are the direct result of incompetent leadership by them over at least the last eight years. The Republican Party's use of scare tactics such as "socialism" IS a genuine distraction to Obama's efforts to get the economy back on track.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:44 pm |
  71. S, Michigan

    Maybe, maybe not- can't read the Prez's mind (can you?)- it's the right thing to do to advance science and give a shot at treatment for thousands suffering from some of the diseases currently called "incurable".

    March 9, 2009 at 2:46 pm |
  72. Kevin - Torrance, CA

    No.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:46 pm |
  73. David Gerstenfeld

    No, the President is fulfilling a campaign promise. As to the economy, those who have jobs & are afraid to spend money are hastening their own demise by not keeping their future customers employed by buying their goods & services.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:49 pm |
  74. Paul S. Columbia, SC

    Of course it's a distraction Jack. Next, Obama will be pulling quarters from behind our ears. It reminds me of the missiles being fired at some bad guys for a few days to keep Monica off the front pages. That didn't work either. I'm getting real sick of being talked to and treated like I am stupid.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:50 pm |
  75. Tom, Switzerland

    No, they are wrong. Obama is simply doing the right thing and moving the country into the 21st century, instead of keeping it in the religiously dominated Dark Ages.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:52 pm |
  76. Richard New Hampshire

    Very funny!
    No,the Republicans are wrong.The Republicans may be distracted or may be trying to distract.Wikipedia states"a distraction can be a scource of comedy whether the amusement comes from the gullibility of those distracted or the strangeness of whatever is utilized to create the distraction.:
    President Obama promised change.I doubt the Republicans are gullibile.It must be the "strangeness" that is causing thier distraction.
    Stem cell research is important to all of us,including Republicans.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:52 pm |
  77. Jason, Koloa, HI

    Ask the millions of victims and families who suffer from diseases that stem cell research may benefit if they think this is a distraction. I'd bet they'd say it's about time that we had a leader who made decisions based on science and facts rather than supersttious religious dogma.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:52 pm |
  78. Susan from Twn Falls Idaho

    Some Republicans are always saying something. Whatever President Obama does will come under scrutiny because they have nothing better to do? The key to what you think is a problem is to offer a solution. Have you noticed that is always lacking? Even Nancy Reagan condones this stem cell research. You don’t live with someone that has needed this kind of help and not support a possible cure.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:53 pm |
  79. David Bebeau,Springfield Missouri

    Jack
    So fantastic so awesome so long in coming.Best thing that will ever happen in our time.I blows my mind that a president held back for almost a decade something that would help our injured people something that would make a big difference in perhaps a childs life.
    This IS the right choice for all of our people and the best choice......
    Thank you so much Mr Obama
    David Bebeau

    March 9, 2009 at 2:53 pm |
  80. BRUCE, ST PAUL, MN

    President Obama has lots and lots of people and resources at his command. It is entirely possible and even desirable to do many things at once. . Are the Republicans serious? Only a fool would try to govern with tunnel vision. It just seems like more sniping from a party bereft of ideas or solutions.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:54 pm |
  81. Gord from Boston

    Jack
    A distraction would exist if the stem cell debate had been re-kindled, but their is no debate, nor even a hint of recognizing the valid moral arguement that those who oppose stem cell resaearch may have. President Obama has just shoved his beliefs down the throats of the American public. Discussing the arrogance of this President will be the distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:54 pm |
  82. Tom in Desoto Texas

    The Republicans are wrong. Apparently they who say it's a distraction believe anything George W Bush did would not be corrected.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:56 pm |
  83. Richard New Hampshire

    no, the Republicans are wrong.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:56 pm |
  84. Ryan, Galesburg, IL

    President Obama wants to focus on science to find rational means of solving our most grave issues. The only things distracting us from the economy are petty arguments from the party of special interests.

    March 9, 2009 at 2:59 pm |
  85. Lynn

    No. They are once again far off base and overly critical and it's getting old. Last time I checked, research creates jobs. Not only that , but a breakthrough in stem cel research could significantly lower medical costs, saving us all money. How about you stop giving republicans so much air time until they have something constructive to say?.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:00 pm |
  86. Larry from Georgetown, Texas

    Of course this is what the Republicans would say since they never have had a good plan to try and stimulate the economy other that give more tax cuts to the wealthy.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:01 pm |
  87. Jim/NC

    No, republicans are wrong. President Obama is paying off supporters of a certain voting block. I read that scientists believe it will take 10-15 years to gain knowledge of what stem cell can "possibly" bring to solutions for terrible diseases. It is important that we find cures for many diseases, however, let the private sector do the research with private funds...the US government is spending all of our money for many years to come.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:05 pm |
  88. Rory Gordon

    Note: my prior comment, the statement "rage at the administration and Republicsns in Congress..." contains an error. I meant to say "rage at the Bush administration and Republicans in Congress." Thank you.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:07 pm |
  89. Paulette,Dallas,PA

    No. This is something long overdue. Obama's Presidental administration needs to function on many levels simultaneously. Multitasking. This stem cell research could find cures for a number of diseases and save many lives in the long run.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:12 pm |
  90. Claire

    Jack –
    Since the President has promised "ethical guidelines" in his embryonic stem cell decision, I wonder if the parents of these embryos will be offered the option of having their babies adopted rather than give them to science for experimentations. If that is done, then the decision is on the parents' conscience.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:13 pm |
  91. Nancy, Grand Ledge,MI

    Republicans are a distraction from the economy. They can't accept the fact that they lost. We heard their ideas and voted overwhelmingly for Obama. They are coming across as angry men who care more about the Republican Party than they do about the survival of the American people. They keep saying that we need to hear their message, but they don't LISTEN to the voters message. Obama is doing what we elected him to do!

    March 9, 2009 at 3:15 pm |
  92. tom

    no,it's not a distraction. how can anyone be distracted from this economic mess.
    the reversal is necessary.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:15 pm |
  93. John

    Jack...
    You are a reporter. You know that everything in politics is a distraction from reality.
    John
    Pampa,TX

    March 9, 2009 at 3:19 pm |
  94. MYSTERIOUS

    No, they are not right. They just keep throwing stuff up to see if it sticks. That being said, I remember clearly when Senator McCain talked about suspending his campaign until the crisis was over, and then-Senator Obama said the "The president has to sometimes juggle more than one thing at at time...." This is called "juggling more than one thing at a time." It is not like he has only one person working under him. He's delegating.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:22 pm |
  95. Matt from Kansas City

    That grossly misinformed opinion offered by the republicans you speak of was the distraction. Embryonic stem cell research in this country was stifled by pressures from Christian conservative extremists, whom the GOP had chosen as its constituency of choice at that time. A faction within the republican party thinks it has some traction again with their out-of-proportion criticism of the Obama administration's fiscal policy and are merely trying to draw our attention back to the center ring of their circus of disinformation.

    -Matt from Kansas City

    March 9, 2009 at 3:23 pm |
  96. Jake, New Jersey

    It's all theater. They just want to frame it as one. Like Obama said a president has to be able to handle several tasks at once. If he was ignoring everything BUT the economic crisis, they'd be trying to label him as incompetent. The GOP isn't fooling anyone (intelligent).

    March 9, 2009 at 3:25 pm |
  97. Jane (Minnesota)

    I'm sure that's how the Republicans will paint it. To me, it's not a distraction-I would hope that it will lead to research jobs (that stay here in this country) and ultimately to cures for illneeses or spinal cord injuries.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:27 pm |
  98. Axl in Iowa

    I think the "comprehensive" health care reform and gross government over-spending is enuf distraction. He's just throwing his supporters a carrot so he can say he's keeping all his campaign promises.
    I can here him now.
    "Well I disagree the critics, the real question here is not, "Why did 10,000 American's get laid off today?"
    "I just reversed stem cell research limits." Now is the time we need to ask ourselves, " How much pork can we stuff into the research bill?" "Thank You, and God Bless America"

    "There are NO earmarks in this Bill"

    March 9, 2009 at 3:27 pm |
  99. Beverly

    No – it is multi-tasking, keeping a campaign promise, offering hope to many of us with family and friends who might benefit from the research, and may actually generate business and employment that will help the economy.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:27 pm |
  100. kishen c.rao

    no way....it is good for the research and further finding new medicines for uncurable deseases...

    March 9, 2009 at 3:27 pm |
  101. Nadine - Ohio

    Not really. This President has the foresight and common sense enough to know that there are a couple things in this life that are certain: Death and taxes. No matter what he does today, history will "paint" him one way or another. He has decided that he wants to be remembered as the people's president who spent little time second guessing decisions, although he knows some will not be popular and some will be dead wrong. For this president, being proactive and just plain active is better than his predecessor's complacent and at times bullheaded stands on things that mattered.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:30 pm |
  102. Kerry Diehl

    When life has little meaning to an individual (support of stem cell research and partial birth abortion among his support) it is obvious.

    Obama's tactic is to keep firing as fast and furious as he can his many socialist agenda items as he can just to keep the rest of us off balance.

    With little time to react on each one of Obama's radical left goals, he has a better chance of cramming them down our throat.

    Sadly enough, he is much more than a socialist! I predict he will soon be referred to as ‘Comrade’ Obama by the majority of us!

    March 9, 2009 at 3:31 pm |
  103. MARCUS123 Flanders

    YES

    March 9, 2009 at 3:32 pm |
  104. Chelsea

    We can not have a one issue President. Stem Cell Research is a necessity to begin combating disease which damages the quality of life of millions of Americans. As the President, Obama has the duty of enhancing the lives of all people of this nation.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:33 pm |
  105. Tom Ft Lauderdale

    Jack
    What happenend to the war in Iraq did dubayah take it to Texas?. Stem cell research and it's politics has fallen victim to the economy.We can argue the stem cell issue after we slay the economic dragons.....

    March 9, 2009 at 3:34 pm |
  106. Mark in Westminster, MD

    Absolutely not – he's just doing some things Republicans are incapable of doing, so they beleive noone can do them – they are called multitasking and keeping campaign promises.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:37 pm |
  107. Rob, San Diego

    No. Obama is fulfilling one of his campaign promises. If he could fulfill them all, maybe we could really turn this country around – especially the ones regarding transparency in the government, reducing the debt, and ending earmarks.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:37 pm |
  108. David of Alexandria VA

    Anything which is not focused like a laser beam on the economy and banking system is a distraction as far as I am concerned. Pretty much everything else can and should wait.

    In any case, this was pretty much a non-event. The release of funds will still require congressional rules for implementation - and if they are as good at doing that as ererything else, we're years away from seeing any results.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:38 pm |
  109. Mary Johnson

    Distraction? Only if people choose to be distracted from the economy by the other important issues out there. Personally, I manage to focus on more than one thing at a time. course, I'm not a Republican. 🙂

    March 9, 2009 at 3:38 pm |
  110. Jack Martin

    Jack
    President Obama is simply undoing every destructive action taken by Bush and his enablers in congress. Every little thing helps even if some think it distracting.
    Jack in Florida

    March 9, 2009 at 3:44 pm |
  111. Linda in Florida

    Jack, it might be a temporary distraction from the economy, but it needed to be done.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:44 pm |
  112. steve in Florida

    They're only right in that it's a distraction from their campaign of obstruction. Obama's firing on all cylinders and getting things done. And he's certainly more than capable of dealing with more than one issue at a time. This particular reversal of Bush policy is actually a bit of an embarrassment to the ideologues, IMHO. The old pro-life nit-picking "stone age" arguments just don't hold up very well against the high-tech 21st Century potential to relieve human suffering and potentially cure diseases that have plagued us for thousands of years.
    And scientific break-throughs are always good for the economy. It's called progress. We need to embrace the fact that we've entered the 21st Century, not fight it. Even the conventional automobile is based on 2 of the initial ancient technologies, fire and the wheel. And they run on the carmelized remains of dinosaurs. Time to move on.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:45 pm |
  113. Pat,Clearwater Florida

    No, was it a distraction when Bush signed it into law during the
    recent wars maybe!!!

    March 9, 2009 at 3:47 pm |
  114. Joe in DE

    The economy is very important but no reason to skip other issues. The stem cell thing was to be expected – the oppoents need to get over it.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:48 pm |
  115. Tripp Mechanicsburg, PA

    These Republicans need to get their priorities in order. Stem cell research = important. Rush Limbaugh = not important. Economy = important. Congress taking vacation = not important. Passing stimulus package = important. Peeing contest over pork = not important.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:48 pm |
  116. Jill from CA

    No, I think it proves that, unlike the last president, he can walk and chew gum at the same time.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:48 pm |
  117. Melissa

    Simply put, no it isn't. The claim that its a distraction from the economy is an attempt to distract from the economy.

    Doesn't it strike you as odd that, with all the OTHER things Obama has done, THIS is the only one that the Republicans have made this ridiculous claim about? It does me.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:48 pm |
  118. Diana in NJ

    Gop says anythng to try and get headlines... many who voted for the President did so wanting the reasearch to start up again to help the sick .

    March 9, 2009 at 3:48 pm |
  119. Curtis. Oxnard, CA

    Distraction? Not unless we import scientist to do the research. It creates jobs. Just what the economy needs.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:49 pm |
  120. Mark in OKC

    Who cares what the Republicans think? It was not only the right thing to do, but the moral thing to do!

    March 9, 2009 at 3:49 pm |
  121. George, Dunedin, Florida

    The Republicans have no room to talk when it comes to the economy, so if all they have to do is "Hope the new administration fails", then we have no need for them at all. Let them keep running their mouths instead of offering alternatives (Please none of Bush's plans) then they should butt out, before they are butted out...

    March 9, 2009 at 3:49 pm |
  122. Meg from Troy, Ohio

    Jack–
    No, and it may even help the economy by providing some more jobs in the industry. Republicans are just mad that they don't own the White House anymore.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:51 pm |
  123. Kirven

    No, this is just the Republicans crying again. They cry more than a new born. This move by our President means that we have a leader and a party that believes in science. And they believe that curing the sick is more important to a very weak argument about abortion.

    Kirven
    Rancho Cordova, CA

    March 9, 2009 at 3:52 pm |
  124. Ray Lawson from Danville, VA

    It was a political payoff. He promised to some of his contributors and so followed through. It is as simple as that.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:52 pm |
  125. KimSmith, Dodge City, Kansas

    Republicans are a distraction from the economy. But what can you expect from people who's intellectual and political guru is Rush Limbaugh.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:55 pm |
  126. Mike McKibben, lady lake, Fl

    If Rep. Cantor has ANYTHING bad to say about it (stem cell research included), then the change must be a good idea. If it was Rep Cantor that said that the reversal of stem cell research is a distraction from the economy, my only question would be, "How do you conclue that"? Must be more Republican talking points. But all things considered, it is an improvement over........"No". Why is it that everytime I see Rep Cantor, I feel that he should be wearing a beanie cap with a prop on top of it?

    March 9, 2009 at 3:55 pm |
  127. JC

    I don't believe saving lives is a distraction. Wouldn't that mean there's more people around to spend money, and therefore repair the economy??

    March 9, 2009 at 3:55 pm |
  128. Mike Wade

    Here's my answer to you... Some Republicans are the world's masters at distractions and have enormous gall. Recall an impeachment over a lie about an affair? Recall the Terri Schiavo debacle while a war was draining the national treasure? Recall someone babbling about "palling around with terrorists" when the economy was in full meltdown?

    Here's my message to "Some Republicans".... shut up and get out of the way.

    Mike
    Columbus, OH

    March 9, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  129. ines from greenville sc

    Obama's reversal on the stem cell issue was made clear as a proposed agenda during his campaign. He made good on a clearly stated promise.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  130. Kaye -Jacksonville FL

    A distraction?? Not to the millions of people who suffer from afflications that may be helped by stem cell research. Not to the scientists who have had their life-saving research stymied by the Bush administration. Not to the Americans who support science and medical advancements.

    The Republicans are the ones who need a distraction from the economy – maybe they should come up with a distraction all their own – maybe something involving Rush Limbaugh's "incendiary and ugly" remarks?

    March 9, 2009 at 3:58 pm |
  131. Doris/St. Louis

    The Republicans are wrong as usual. Our newly elected President can "walk and chew gum".

    March 9, 2009 at 3:58 pm |
  132. John from Alabama

    Jack: Republican bureaucrats changed the finding of scientist during the Bush Administration to suit their own purposes. Allowing research to proceed is not news, but changing it to suit your own ends is news.

    John from Alabama

    March 9, 2009 at 3:58 pm |
  133. Brian, Buffalo, NY

    Jack, one minute some people are saying that the President is not doing enough to solve ALL the problems facing the country. Next minute, he is apparently doing too much and should concentrate on one issue at a time. The problem is that the economy is going to be in dire straits for some years and it is just not possible to shove every other problem under the carpet. Our President came into the White House with a wide agenda of aims and, so far, has exhibited great courage and wisdom in the handling of inherited woes. It is great that he has not reneged on some of his campaign promises.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:58 pm |
  134. Tom in Desoto Texas

    Obama HAS overturned Bush's stem cell policy and the issue is done, this was just a minor item which Obama dispelled quickly so it wouldn't be delayed. The economy still stinks, and little if any time has been lost.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  135. Joyce-Marshall, TX

    There they go again. The grand oldl aparty of no. It's not a distraction, it's an opportunity to move forward to reducing healh care cost and 8 years of lost research.

    March 9, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  136. Rob of Brooklyn

    not at all. This is something that could help a lot of people in the long term and possibly in the short term. Nobody knows for sure. We're finally being released from the edicts of the religious right . Its about time. Everything Bush did should be reversed

    March 9, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  137. Brad

    I can't think of many things the Republicans have been right about lately, especially with Rush Limbaugh opening his mouth and spewing out nonsense; This is another one of their accusations to distract us from the fact that their party is responsible for the last 8 years that got us into the economic mess we're in.

    More funding here will help us cure diseases and to save lives in the long run if things go well. Its an order worth signing and even former first lady Reagan agrees with that.

    What else do they have to complain about?

    March 9, 2009 at 4:00 pm |
  138. Disgusted

    No Republicans are never right, just as Democrats can never be wrong.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:01 pm |
  139. Betty, San Diego, Ca.

    We all could use a good distraction from our current economic situation. However, if it was not a distraction when George Bush implemented the executive order to ban federal funding for stem cell research, it is not a distraction now. Obviously, the distraction is Republican politicization of the federal government and ideology.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:02 pm |
  140. Jack, NY

    All one has to do is to review the signing of global abortions to see the agenda of this administration. In particular, has the American people researched advances in using skin cells and/or cord blood instead of embryos? It is scientifically proven these alternatives are safer for the patient and are being used successfully. Just one more example of fleecing the taxpayer. The PORK is too fatty and the spending is out of control. Most importantly my question to America is why do they really want to fund this program, as it is outdated and various scientific advances have taken place in the past few years that makes this obsolete.
    Wake Up America!!!!!
    Jack
    NY

    March 9, 2009 at 4:02 pm |
  141. Steve of Hohenwald TN.

    Hell no ! The President has a huge mess to clean up. Even if elected for a second term, the man has a lot to do and a short time to do it. Thank God ! We are comming out of the dark ages. No more blood letting, no more leaches, no more rattels and beads. Just some crazy new thing called science.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:03 pm |
  142. Bill Myrtle Beach

    Hard to take the party of God & guns seriously when they still refuse to believe in evolution.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:03 pm |
  143. Jim Robertson

    It seems to me that this type of research could eventually lead to less expensive medical treatments down the road. Reducing healthcare costs while avoiding socialized medicine is something everyone should get behind.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:04 pm |
  144. Andrew

    Now that Republicans have called out Obama, they are the ones who have made it a distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:04 pm |
  145. Angela

    Republicans will say anything negative they can about President Obama. Besides in my opinion it is the Republicans that got us into the economic mess we are in now. They make stuff up whether it makes sense or not.

    Last I heard over 600 people applied for one janitorial job in Ohio this past week! There is a tent city in California making the news. Only the "no" party Republicans would try to sell a one day story on stem cell reversal as distracting the average American from their economic woes. Please stop giving the Republicans all this media attention for their empty headed blathering.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:06 pm |
  146. Diane, Barneveld, NY

    Of course not. It doesn't mean that research will start on it. Congress has a bill preventing that from happening, so why all the fuss?

    March 9, 2009 at 4:06 pm |
  147. Eugene

    Probably just as much as the orginal stem cell ban was on the war in Iraq. For that matter, back then the economy was probably a huge distraction for the Republicans too.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:06 pm |
  148. Michael

    It is only a distraction if those who oppose federal funding for stem cell research make it one. Congressional Republicans seem to forget that Mr. Obama has pledged to do this since some of his first days on the presidential campaign trail. It would also seem that they may have not been paying attention during Mr. Obama's Congressional Address a few weeks back, where again he pledged to reverse Bush's executive order. I truly believe that Obama sees this as part of his overvall plan of healthcare reform. He has always taken a humble approach in his explanation for his decision to reverse this executive order by trying to make the separation of religion and public policy. By being so open about his stance on stem cell research, Obama was most likely trying to avoid this from becoming a distraction. However, as usual of late, it is of course Republican outcry who ignored the signs and failed to see the writing on the wall that are using this to grab a headline or two. But ultimately this should not overshadow the problem with our economy. Merely suggesting that it may be a distraction or is used as a distraction, implies that for some people in this country, this issue of federal funding stem cell research is more important than the stablization of our economy. And to make that implication is undermining the collective will of a majority American people who are hoping that this economic stimulus bill works. But then again, chances are that the majority of the American people who are hoping that our economy will rebound is most likely not the majority of those Congressional Republican's constituents who are making these accusations.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:07 pm |
  149. Deborah, Los Angeles

    No, Jack. Republicans CALLING it a distraction is a distraction. My goodness, is there nothing productive that this 'party of no' won't criticize? I have a brilliant and beautiful 18 year old nephew who became quadriplegic after an accident last year-those self-serving republican'ts should try convincing HIM that the stem cell reversal is just a distraction!

    March 9, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  150. Nick in San Diego

    Of course not, Jack. Aside from actually providing funds to research programs, it sends a message to the world that US policy is no longer being controlled by the radical religious right.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  151. Geri

    His reversing the stem cell research program isn't distracting me from what is going on, but then I'm not that easily distracted by such things.

    Geri – Mead, OK

    March 9, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  152. KimSmith, Dodge City, Kansas

    We don't mind killings hundreds of thousands of people in an illegal war, and yet we debate over the use of stem cells to aid in healing. You tell me who's morals are the more corrupt?

    March 9, 2009 at 4:09 pm |
  153. Diane Sykstus

    Thank god we have a brilliant president who is not side-tracked by anything but knowledge.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:09 pm |
  154. Dale

    Hy! Lighten up , give this President a chance, can't any one look at this mess as a "glass half full" from our Repud brother and sisters. IOWA

    March 9, 2009 at 4:09 pm |
  155. CB

    Jack,

    It is a signature. It took a couple seconds to mark on a piece of paper.

    How does this distract from his tireless work finding ways to soften the recessions effects on all of us?

    CB

    March 9, 2009 at 4:10 pm |
  156. Richard Green

    Jack,
    I'm not distracted. Are you? Maybe the Republicans who get distracted by shiny things and lit matches are having trouble focusing, but the vast majority of us are not distracted.

    Rich Green
    San Clemente, Cal.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:10 pm |
  157. Jeff in Glen Carbon IL

    Oh, come on Jack, are you running out of good questions? The man is not GWB, he can actually do many things simultaneously. And having been a former Republican who was embarassed by their ludicrous position on stem cells, I am happy if this upsets the right wing (and some pundits).

    March 9, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  158. maria, los angeles

    whatever Jack, people will always have something to say. but that is because we have nothing better to do. if it's a distraction let it be, we need something to deter the fear that is going on in america. but stem cell research is better now than later. we need to stop scrutinizing our President, if the republicans wanted to babysit the president they should of started with George W. Bush.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  159. Billy G in Las Vegas

    the Republicans are just trying to get out from under THEIR disasterous handling of the economy the last 8 years. who CARES what they have to say? and was it Rush Limburger approved?

    March 9, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  160. Jackson from Rome, GA

    While it may be the elephant in the room, the economy is not the only issue President Obama is going to have to tackle. I applaud his decision and I hope that stem cell research will be able to get the funding it needs. Millions of Americans live with conditions such as diabetes which could be improved or even cured through stem cell research and therapy. To have allowed the ban to have gone on this long is downright shameful and to have the door opened is truly a breath of fresh air.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  161. Purnell Kankakee lL.

    No it is not!

    How can that guy say that the mess on the border is manufactured too? Who many Americans being kidnapped and murdered does it take for it to be considered a national security threat! Bring our soldiers back from across the world, because we have no protection along our borders, we are wide open for an invasion any nation could gain a foothold and it would take many years to get rid of them! Or are we doomed to repeat the mistakes of the past!

    March 9, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  162. Sean in California

    The Iraqi invasion was a distraction from the economy, Jack. The continuing occupation of Iraq was a distraction from the economy. The economy has gotten to the point where it can't be ignored. By reversing bush's ill-conceived policies on stem-cell research, President Obama is actually going to CREATE jobs in this area...imagine that. Funding=jobs. What a concept.

    The GOP is trying to wave the economy as a red flag for anything they disagree with (in other words, anything President Obama tries to accomplish).

    March 9, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  163. Garrett Stiger

    I fail to see how President Obama's reversal of Bush's stem cell rulings could be seen as a distraction. Bush's ideological-based policies have crippled the United States science community. The Republicans have demonstrated politics as usual by trying to paint our President's actions as a distraction. Rather, it may be the Republicans who are trying to distract from their own lack of leadership and vision.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  164. Jac Campbell

    Contrary. Once again President Obama threatens tens of millions of jobs and countless organizations and institutions by announcing the possibility (more than Hope) of a cure for the diseases which support this economy. The "promise " is a direct threat to God's will and the pharmaceutical industry.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  165. callie wysong

    It is only a distraction because the repubs are the distractionist party! We have wasted 8 precious years..people are waiting and suffering! Keep your religion out of my government!

    March 9, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  166. Virginia, Michigan

    No, this is not a distraction. The economy is the 800 pound gorilla in the room. The distraction is all the sanctimonious, holier-than-thou control freaks trying to impose their brainwashed ideology on everyone else. As the bumper sticker says, if you want to live in a country run by religion, MOVE TO IRAN.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  167. Marty Scheetz

    Obama continuously looks for distractions so people won't pay as much attention to the economy, but guess what, it's not working.
    He told us not to pay attention to the ups and downs of the markets as though people losing our retirement and 401K's isn't a big deal.
    Sorry Obama, I'm one of those idiots that bought a modest home, paid it off, and actually lived within my means and saved for retirement.
    Obviously people like me are not on your lise of priorities.
    We're the bad guys.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  168. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    That is so funny Jack...we cannot chew and walk at the same time!

    March 9, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  169. jacque

    Mr Cafferty,

    The GOP are the ones using stemcell research to distract the the American people from their attempts at playing the obstructionist to Obama's plans to get America back on track..

    March 9, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  170. Toronto Jeff

    It probably is a distraction – after all, look what you're talking about now, Jack.

    But the fact remains with cable news outlets like CNN/Fox News and the like reporting on the sorry state of the economy 24/7, it's refreshing to hear you (and others) speak of something other than doom & gloom for a change!

    March 9, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  171. Bud Pratt Punta Gorda, FL

    The answer lies in the question, Jack.

    Obviously, that would mean that the stimulus plan had worked very well, and created two million jobs in the construction sector alone.

    We could all breath a first sigh of relief, couldn't we?

    Bud Pratt Punta Gorda, FL

    March 9, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  172. Nancy, Grand Ledge,MI

    We are eight years behind on possible cures because of some Republicans. I think they should shut up and go home. Peesident Obama is doing exactly what we elected him to do. If they aren't going to help him, the least they can do is get out of the way! Accept it! They lost!

    March 9, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  173. Agnes from Scottsdale, AZ

    Jack: Ask a spinal cord injury victim if this is a distraction! Given the last 8 years, the GOP forgot that serious governoment needs to operate with all cylinders going at the same time. Given all that Barack Obama has already done in his less than 2 months in office, one might ask what took him so long!!

    March 9, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  174. Granny, Battle Creek, Michigan

    Why would anyone with two working braincells listen to anything Newtie Ginrich and Boohoo Boehner say? They're just Rushmouth wannabes. They're just losers. Sore losers, at that.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  175. eyelander

    It's not a distraction for those of us who are really hurting from the state of the economy. Mr. Obama has already put his plan in place and there is nothing more to do but wait for it to start working. The only people that are distracted are those who are debating whether or not his economic plan will work; and the only effect the economy has had on them is that they are down a million or two in value – they still have several millions left to hold them over to better times.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  176. Liz, Windsor, Ontario, Canada

    No, I do not believe it is a distraction from the economy – it is a very necessary and important step so hopefully cures can be found for cancer, diabetes, Parkinson's, and many other diseases. This can never be done soon enough!

    March 9, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  177. Laura

    Jack:

    I feel that we need to open the dialogue on the subject. President Bush slammed it shut and it has been sitting idle for all this time.

    This reversal can actually help the economy in a small way. More lab workers, scientists, office workers to record results. It may not be much but if Obama touted 25 jobs in Ohio last week than the few jobs this would help create would certainly fit the bill.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:20 pm |
  178. Karen - Nashville TN

    They are wrong. Former President Bush and his ilk believe a few early embryonic cells are of more value than the people who might be cured of Parkinson's, paralysis, immune disorders, and countless other debilitating ailments. Reversing this ridiculous, religious-based decision was due to an urgent need and had nothing to do with the economy. I hope it is in time to help our injured veterans.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:20 pm |
  179. marcus

    Yes. Period. End of story.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  180. M from Toronto

    I don't think the spiralling downward North American economy is something anyone can forget so easily. Certainly the Republicans would like to think it's something they can forget........like forgetting they've caused it!!

    I'm thrilled that common sense and science have returned to the White House if nowhere else.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  181. Roz Jones

    Only a Republican could come up with such an incredibly inane comment. Looks like some projection is going on here. Cantor's comment appears to be a means to deflect attention away from Obama and toward the GOP. He may as well have said "Hello, we're here!"

    Roz
    Branford, CT

    March 9, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  182. Pat. E

    It is not impossible for a smart president to do so many things at the same time. Stem cell does not take away from him still focusing on the economy. Remember that Obama's popularity soared during the campaign when McCain wanted a debate postponed because he wanted to focus on the passage of a bill?. Republicans will also critizes him if all he does is the economy.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:22 pm |
  183. James Lenon - Chuckey TN

    The stem cell reversal is a distraction only for people who believe that religious fundamentalists should be allowed to block scientific research and medical care. It's time to tell our homegrown taliban that they are no longer relevant.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:22 pm |
  184. MARK KOCKA HAYWARD,WI.

    JACK, Pres. Obama is intelligent, progressive, energetic, and wants to get things done. There is no time to wait for the same old worn out republican ways. Been there done that! With all the intelligent scientists out there lets maybe find a cure for cancer, diabetes, the common cold! Distraction from the economy? Seems like all the republicans have, is to keep bashing the Obama administration for everything wrong the Bush era did!

    March 9, 2009 at 4:22 pm |
  185. Chris

    Stem cell research can help make great strides in the treatment and potential curing of a variety of diseases such as spinal cord injury, diabetes, cystic fibrosis and autoimmune conditions (like lupus and rheumatoid arthritis.) Those disease are long term chronic disorders that are very expensive to treat, $1000s per month for life. If you are going to work to overhaul healthcare, you need to develop better treatments as well as cut waste. Government funding opens more opportunities for research, more jobs and hope to thousands affected by disease that can potentially be cured. This is a good idea not a distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:22 pm |
  186. Michael from Coon Rapids, MN

    I don't think it is a distracton. It is something he was always going to do. Nothing Obama could do can distract the public from the economy at this time. He needs to tell the public how his policies will help the broad range of jobs in the private business sector, not just union construction jobs. He has to convince people that the private business sector is wrong on it's assement that the Obama economic policies won't work.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  187. Jerry,OK

    These are the same guys that refused to support the president's recovery package. Why would anyone pay attention to what they say? Even Rush Limbaugh has more credibility than these jokers. He at least is honest about wanting the recovery package to fail, and not pretending he's the one that's concerned about the economic mess.

    Jerry N/Broken Arrow, OK

    March 9, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  188. Curtis in Philadelphia

    How so Jack? Do they mean we totally stop dealing with the economic downturn and focus only on stem cell research, the way John McCain suspended his campaign in order to focus on the economy. I can walk and chew gum at the same time, can't they deal with more than one issue at a time?

    March 9, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  189. Waldo in Austin

    Jack, it's all smoke and mirrors. Now we've got to watch what both hands are doing, and since they're both behind the back, there goes transparency.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  190. Joyce, Florida

    Hey Jack, They can't have it both ways. The President promised change and he's working at it. The economic mess is #1, but
    if everyone won't get on board to solve problems, he has other things on his plate in the meantime.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  191. Griff...... The Truth

    He read about Canada Skin-Cell find, a week ago plus.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  192. Randy from Salt Lake City

    Of course it is. That's the idea. CNNABCNBCCBSFOX are going to hound on this for weeks, parading a constant stream of religious nutjobs sparring with scientists. It's all to steal attention away from illegal wars, the collapsing economy and coming marshall law.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  193. Karl from SF, CA

    They're not right, they’re Republicans. Remember, The Grand Obstructionist Party? The party that has no known leader or idea of what the party stands for. Only 15% of the population has any use for them at all. Who cares what Boehner and Cantor say? They and their opinions are irrelevant.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:26 pm |
  194. Robert Ammon, Palm Coasdt, Fl.

    Dear Jack,
    Distraction? This coming from the kings of distraction. Carl Rove, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hateninny. These are the poster boys of distraction. These things and many more need to be done. I'm praying Obama can put Humpty Dumpty back together again after George and Company shoved him off the wall.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:27 pm |
  195. Terry, TX

    Off course it is..... the topic is the financial crisis is ...banks....jobs...for American's only. It is getting creepy.... he's appearing more like an attention deficit teenager on meth......can't stay focused or accomplish the task at hand.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:28 pm |
  196. Kevin Monticello FL

    It is high time that we recognize , Religion has absolutely no place in the way of benificial science. Like the old addage says "God helps those , who help themselves." If you get cancer , you go to a hospital correct? If stem cell development can viably produce avenues and cures for horriffic diseases, its time to use the brains God gave us and move forward. These people are as bad as the Islamic clerics they propose to "hate" by polluting progress with zealous nonsense just as they have in the abortion debate! Id rather see a woman of sound mind and body make a good decision then burden the taxpayer because it was supposedly "Gods" will.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:28 pm |
  197. Cheryl in Cambridge, Ontario

    No, this is not a distraction – no one in their right mind could be distracted from this downward spiral of economics! But I do think the repubs are trying to create a distraction of their own. They don't want people to take note of how poorly their party is being run, so they try to put the focus elsewhere. They don't seem to realize the public are a smart lot – smart enough to realize they (the repubs) are yet again trying to prevent progress for the American people by taking away an opportunity to develope cures that might just wipe the smiles off the faces of their pharmaceutical lobbyists friends. Make no mistake about it – the pockets in the republican party run deep enough that compassion for fellow man has no place when all is said and done.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  198. carmelodc

    I guess if republicans think that keeping a campaign promise is a distraction, than yes.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  199. Charles from Roswell, Georgia

    What do these Republicans know? Suddently, they are the expert of economy. Anything they disagree they will put them in the category of distraction of economy. Obama is simply removing the "ideological sideshow" (as Gingrich pointed out) out of politics.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  200. Nick in Chicago, IL

    I guess Cantor would like Obama to pull a McCain and suspend his presidency until the economy is fixed. I was under the mistaken impression that the President of the United States could handle multi-tasking but apparently Cantor thinks it is only possible to tackle one problem at a time. Let's face facts, the Obama administration scares the hell out of the Republicans because he is popular, his policies are popular and his popularity only continues to rise as he dismantles the disastrous policies of the Bush Administration. So I guess the answer is yes, this is a distraction for the Republicans because they can't figure out why all of their terrible policies and their party are so unpopular.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  201. C Greene Oklahoma city

    NO!!! It means he is keeping a promise.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  202. Charlie in Belen, New Mexico

    Distraction from the economy ???? John Boehner etc. are sounding more and more like a flock of lost sheep, baaaaa-ing in search of a bell to follow..... I take that back. Most sheep are smarter than the GOP's "leadership"......

    March 9, 2009 at 4:32 pm |
  203. NYC REPUB, Bx., NY

    Eric Cantor, is a partisan, psuedo intellect....... Ask Nacy Reagan, the Gippers wife, if this was a distraction........ President's must do more than one thing at once.... One thing I must say sadly Jack, I was inspired this morning by an interview Warren Buffett gave to a well known stock channel. One of the main things he said was this; "We're in an economic war right now, and republicans, and democrats need to fall in line under the President." I hope the american people at least get to hear this....... the congress, senate, and other commentators, are causing a fiancial panic, w/ their negative rhetoric!!

    March 9, 2009 at 4:34 pm |
  204. Mark from New Jersey

    Unlike the Bush administration, that could not do one thing at a time competently, honestly or intelligently, the Obama administration is capable of multi-tasking. Correcting the blurring of the lines between church and state, not to mention deciding between science and ideology also does not require a sixty vote majority or approval from the party of "no" and is therefore an easy decision. If you contend that this distracts from the economy, then you are too easily distracted.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:34 pm |
  205. Nick

    Yeah, you know President Obama should really stop doing all the things that he said that he was going to do when he was campaigning and start doing all the things that the Republicans in Congress want him to do because they have so many great ideas for fixing the economy like you know cutting taxes for the rich even more and... well I guess that is the only idea they have but it won them quite a few election before everyone learned that trickle down economics is a bunch of BS

    March 9, 2009 at 4:36 pm |
  206. D in NH

    Absolutely not. I'm tired of people saying that the President can't walk and chew gum at the same time. I guess these people think we're so simple minded that we can't keep it all straight. Congress, on the other hand, should definitely stay gum free.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:36 pm |
  207. Joan: Burlington, Vt

    No. It is meant to distract us from all of those earmarks in his recovery bill. Remember he doesn't own the economy problems, that he did indeed inherit. He does own the recovery bill and its earmarks however.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:36 pm |
  208. JL

    Working in business, you hear this all the time – the company should be working on THIS problem and not THAT problem. But companies, like governments, have many different components, and if a company focuses on one thing only, they're not developing or growing the rest of their business. In the government's case, not all of the components are economy- or Treasury-focused. Should their work – like a company's – STOP because there's a problem elsewhere? No.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:36 pm |
  209. Michael John, Toronto, Canada

    While I'm glad the President repealed the limit on tax payers funding stem cell research, Republicans do have a point. The President should be focusing on the economy (period). He's holding a press conference everyday while my parents retirement goes down the drain (I'm in my twenties, I have time to recover my losses). How about fill the vacancies at Treasury and solve this problem!

    March 9, 2009 at 4:36 pm |
  210. Doug

    Jack... I couldn't care less about Republican whiners. For those suffering from diseases and injuries that could benefit from this type of research, President Obama's stem cell reversal is a blessing filled with hope. (New Jersey)

    March 9, 2009 at 4:37 pm |
  211. NYC REPUB, Bx., NY

    Eric Cantor, is a partisan, psuedo intellect……. Ask Nancy Reagan, the Gippers wife, if this was a distraction…….. President’s must do more than one thing at once…. One thing I must say sadly Jack, I was inspired this morning by an interview Warren Buffett gave to a well known stock channel. One of the main things he said was this; “We’re in an economic war right now, and republicans, and democrats need to fall in line under the President.” I hope the american people at least get to hear this……. the congress, senate, and other commentators, are causing a financial panic,and political divisiveness w/ their negative rhetoric!!

    March 9, 2009 at 4:37 pm |
  212. ALLAN HORN - ST. PETERSBURG, FL

    Jack:

    This is just another one of the promises Obama made during the campaign...

    One of the things the Republicans hate about Obama is the fact that he is doing his best to KEEP his promises, despite their foot-dragging and distractions.

    Frankly, I think the Republicans are digging their own graves for 2010... only the Limbaugh ditto heads will vote for them at this rate.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:38 pm |
  213. Brian - Trinidad

    Yes, along with the swing set for his kids and the new dog and the list gets longer everyday.I especially thought Jack's piece on how much he loved Michelle Obama,which could also have been titled "Rubbing Clinton's Nose in it", was a brilliant distraction from how little the Obama White House and the Democrat controlled Congress have done for the country so far.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:40 pm |
  214. Jacob

    I find it difficult to understand how this could possibly be labeled a "distraction". Obama has been dealing with many things in the past month and a half he's been in office. No one said he was trying to distract us when Obama signed the executive order shutting down Guantanamo, or the Lily Ledbetter Act.

    If you ask me (which I guess you did), the only distractions here are the Republicans trying to make Obama look bad for something with the potential to save thousands if not millions of lives. I'm sure they want to get back to debating in the Senate and the House, where they can do the opposition's job and oppose.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:40 pm |
  215. Chris Sutton from South Jersey

    No. Stem cell research can save lives. Yes i know there are those people that say that all it takes is one renegade scientist that will try and do evil.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:43 pm |
  216. gerry luimes

    This is not a distraction;Some people might want to jump on that concept. It is high time to catch up with modernity and adjust to a necessary type of evolvement in science that eventually will bring the USA back into the forefront of scientific and humanitarian research
    accomplishments.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:43 pm |
  217. Josh

    Jack, all this does is make federal funds available for stem cell research. Under Bush, the work could continue, but it wouldn't be funded by the feds. Politics, however, absolutely has a role in science. As a society, we determine scientific ethics through our representatives. Bush fell on the side that purposefully destroying embryos was unethical, so he curbed federal support. Obama doesn't believe it's wrong, so he gave it right back. In the end, though, Obama isn't 'separating politics and science'–that's total BS.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:44 pm |
  218. Don of Stillwater, Oklahoma

    I'm a Republican, but the prevalent GOP response is wrong: The economy is the overarching storyline, directly or indirectly touching the lives of just about everyone. Not even lifting the ban on stem cell research will distract the American public. The only distraction(s) will be in the form of people wanting a break from what is perceived to be "bad news" in general. They will find something in entertainment, sports, or whatever on which to focus, if only for a while, same as people seeking a momentary escape did when going to movies during the Great Depression.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:45 pm |
  219. Ralph Nelson

    Yes, and a good one! I'm less than five years always from dying from diabetes and this means everything to me, and my nephew who has a damaged spinal column. The Republicans leadership is so old and outdated and the creator of the current economic mess. Please...leave the country. Ralph, Yakima Wa.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:45 pm |
  220. Nancy, Tennessee

    We sat and waited for the Republicans to get something done for eight years. President Obama has the energy and determination to accomplish more than one thing at a time. There is no distraction from the economy because medical research, medical treatments, and care for the sick and injured are part of the economy. The Republicans will find another criticism of this administration next week in an attempt to help their party. They could put their energy to better use by trying to find out what they stand for besides the pocketbooks of the very rich.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:45 pm |
  221. Erik, from Seattle

    Jack, there is no reason not to provide funds for advancement in stem-cell research in our country. Politics need to be set aside when it comes to issues that can potentially result in saving lives. The GOP should start to focus on their own problems rather then constantly trying to bring bad publicity to the new administration.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:46 pm |
  222. Sherri Illinois

    President Obama is honoring his campaign promise, its the RIGHT & MORAL thing to do regardless of what others say! I know Christopher Reeve is smiling from heaven above because this reversal will help so many others even if it couldn't help him. As far as a distraction from the economy well thats impossible because it hits him in the face everyday as a sorry reminder of President Bush's fiscal IRRESPONSIBILITY and nothing will distract from that for the next months or years it will take to get this country back on track again.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:47 pm |
  223. Doug - Dallas, TX

    If Eric Cantor, Newt Gingrich and the rest of the Republicans would come up with an alternative solution to the economic mess they put us in, they wouldn't have time to worry about stem cell research. The only distraction is the Republicans criticizing the president about irrelevant topics. I'm surprised they didn't roll out Limbaugh!

    March 9, 2009 at 4:47 pm |
  224. Larry in Illinois

    Jack,

    Most people can multi-task (except Republican politicians). President Obama should be expected to be able to handle more than one thing at a time. Changing the policy on stem-cell research will provide jobs and hopefully cure some of the more debilitating diseases.

    The Republicans have an opinion on everything and it is usually "No". They have gone past being the Party of Reagan to being the Party of Hoover. No matter how bad things get their answer is to just do nothing. They got us into this mess and now think they are the experts on how to get us out of it. They are not being helpful – they have become the distraction.

    They all sound alike in their comments – must be using the same playbook. They screwed it up so now they should sit back and "SHUT UP!"

    March 9, 2009 at 4:48 pm |
  225. Travis

    Why is it a president can't work on more than one thing at a time? Do we the people actually pay politicians to be so narrowly focused? I'm pretty sure most jobs that everyday americans get paid a low wage to do involves multi-tasking. Have we actually lowered our standards so much that we really expect our government to only focus on one problem at a time? No wonder there are so many problems waiting to be fixed.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:48 pm |
  226. Terry Tarrant

    yes-plain and simple the president has been losing the public opinion battle on the economy and was trying to get some positive press from the stem cell argument.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:49 pm |
  227. Mike

    Jack,

    Of course not. They haven't been right about anything else so why should the party of No be believed now.

    Mike
    Tucker, GA

    March 9, 2009 at 4:49 pm |
  228. Valerie - Raleigh

    President Obama's ruling has brought the country "back to the future" in the advances of medical research and has shown the flat-earth society Republicans that we will no longer be hampered by far-right religious dogma. Stem Cell research, with all its wonderful possibilities, now gives hope to many. Thank you, President Obama.

    Valerie

    March 9, 2009 at 4:50 pm |
  229. SY, Oviedo, FL

    Those who object have not, evidently, watched loved ones suffer from any of the diseases which will mitigated or eradicated by the results of this promising science.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:50 pm |
  230. greg allen

    distraction or not it was something that was long overdue.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:50 pm |
  231. tom

    of course not.
    if those who believe in god and are against it,must believe that god gave man intellect and free will.
    so,what's wrong with mankind using its intellect to better the lives of mankind.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:50 pm |
  232. Joe in MO

    No. How long does it take to sign a piece of paper? The GOP wants Obama to fail. Their strategy is to be as negative as possible. Cantor is just stretching to try to find something bad to say about Barack Obama.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:50 pm |
  233. stan, pilesgrove, nj

    as a life long republican I am getting embarrassed with these talking heads, why can't they just shut up.

    As a boomer heading into senior life I want the research and probable cures.

    if it is a distraction Its because its giving these clowns fodder to fill the media with while they pass a bill that gives them the cost of living adjustment, wanna bet it doesn't go down like most everyone else?

    March 9, 2009 at 4:51 pm |
  234. Bo from Atlanta

    It's not a distraction. Pres. Obama has his scientific team focused on this and other issues to make science relevant again in the Whitehouse. His economic team is focused on the economy and our fiscal crisis. He and his team have been in office less than 8 weeks and already have a number of accomplishments (Gitmo, Stimulas package, mortgage assistance, etc) to their credit. Let's not HATE because Obama and his team can walk and chew gum at the same time. It's rather refreshing to have drive and intellect back in the POTUS.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:53 pm |
  235. Ken-Long Island

    Distraction? Sure maybe. But to some people their health is more important than their portfolios. Advances in embryonic stem cell research could mean a cure for multiple myloma, Hodgkins Lymphoma, diabetes, heart disease, Parkinson's, Alzeimem's and a hundred more dreaded conditions. And soon! Just think if funding could have been started eight years ago from embryos that were discarded after abortions. How many lives could have been saved? How many conditions cured? To quote an old song "Satan was laughing with delight." the day George Bush made the most colossally stupid decision of his presidency. Today's reversal of that decision was our first step back in the direction of intelligent leadership. It may be a distraction for some, but from where I am standing it is the dawn of a new day.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:55 pm |
  236. Drew0423

    Sorry to Jack and the GOP that the democratic party has a President who can actually multi task!

    March 9, 2009 at 4:56 pm |
  237. Greg Ontario

    President Obama could say that people need air to survive and the republicans would find some way to say they dissagree.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:56 pm |
  238. Allan from Rhode Island

    The Republicans love anything they can turn into a distraction. As long as the media goes along with them and prints or talks about everything they say they will get their distraction. Enough is enough! It's an executive order! That's That! How can using something to benefit mankind and reduce suffering be destroying life any more than dumping it into an incinerator as useless medical waste. If it is life, as some people insist, let it at least be a useful life before it is destroyed. We have enough useless lives on the planet already.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:57 pm |
  239. Jenny from Nanuet, New York

    No-it's a long overdue important reversal that took 10 minutes to sign into law.

    March 9, 2009 at 4:58 pm |
  240. Tom from Philly

    Republicans need to shut up till they decide if life is valuable only until its born or throught the entire life then they can speak again. The same idiots talking about the rights of prehuman embryos are the ones outraged that nadya gestated 8 of them.

    It was McCain that couldnt campaign and solve the economic crisis at the same time. Among other reasons we voted Mr Obama president BECAUSE he could do more than one thing at a time.

    The Republicans are the distraction, and they are so distracted they havent realized they lost the election, and don't control ANY part of the federal government.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:00 pm |
  241. Eric Bracke, Fort Collins, CO

    It is a distraction and a effort to give thousands of people false hope. Embryonic stem cell research has been going on since the 1950's and has not resulted in one cure or treatment. Adult stem cells have, on the other hand, have resulted in over 80 cures/treatment.
    This is no more than a false distraction on the issues that this nation faces. I truley feel bad for all those folks who now think that a cure is just around the corner.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:01 pm |
  242. kenny cole

    they are totally wrong america has chosing the president they want obama is doing the right thing

    March 9, 2009 at 5:02 pm |
  243. Tom, Santa Barbara, CA

    Considering how helpful the Republicans have been on the economic stimulus so far, it's a wonder that they think they have any leg to stand on. Maybe the stem cells could be used to fabricate one.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:02 pm |
  244. Rae from Indiana

    No. It is the Republicans that are the distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:05 pm |
  245. Moish

    obviously he could have done this weeks ago. The fact is the Administration were waiting for just this time, to distract the nation away from a failing economic policy

    March 9, 2009 at 5:05 pm |
  246. Brian Merlo

    It's not a distraction. This is a correction of another stupid policy from Bush. Let me ask this.... How many Republican policies are in place that are going to help the Octomom and her 14 kids?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:05 pm |
  247. D N

    JACK,

    To the GOP, everything that the President does is a distraction except tax breaks for the rich, and then of course trickle down economy, I just dont understand why can't they get it that it did not work for 8 years, they need to go back and read the history of the french revulotion in 1789 and see what fed up people can do!!!.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:06 pm |
  248. Ken in NC

    Jack, if you are a Republican, the right answer is YES. President Obama getting out of bed every morning is a distraction from the economy if you are a Republican. Since they offer no viable solutions they can only offer “NO” to every attempt to recover the economy.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:09 pm |
  249. Diane in PC Florida

    I give no credibility to this bunch of moronic dimwits, in particular the Republiklans, whose sole opposition to such research is based on theology from the writings of some ancient mysogynists who believed the world was flat.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:09 pm |
  250. Conor in Chicago

    The Republicans screaming about it is the distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  251. Partick Kelly Cheyenne WY

    Its only the Republicans who are distracted by this...

    March 9, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  252. Steven

    Why would it be a distraction from the economy? Stem cell research can save countless lives and to say it is a distraction seems to say that 'finding cures for cancers saves lives, but the economy is more important right now.' That just doesn't seem right.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  253. Jim Jurnak

    There they go again, the Re[publicans obviously cannot do more than one thing at a time if it requires actual ideas.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  254. Wayne

    Multi task to this President means he can screw up several things at once

    March 9, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  255. Dianne Hubbard

    It wouldn't be a distraction if the Republicans shut up about it.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  256. Don Semmens

    Jack, why can't the Republicans understand that you can do more than one thing at a time?

    Don Semmens
    Richmond VA

    March 9, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  257. WO PAYNE

    THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION HAS TO FIX SO MUCH THE REPUBLICANS BROKE. THEY MUST BE VERY BUSY.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  258. Panskeptic

    Nothing seems to distract the Republicans from saying no. Obama is fulfilling a campaign promise, and Nancy Reagan is grateful. Mr. Cantor needs to move beyond reflexive obstructionism.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  259. Jeremy, PA

    This is not a distraction, rather a way to demonstrate that science can answer questions to help people. Not only is this a way to stimulate the economy by expanding the research and testing fields, but it may be a way to eventually help to lower health care costs. It seems like the intelligent thing to do, hence the reason Bush banned it!!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  260. sasha

    Jack-
    The Republicans would shut up if all Obama did was CLEAN UP THEIR MESS they MADE the over the past EIGHT YEARS!!!
    THen I guess they woudl be happy!
    Clean up their mess!!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  261. Al, Toronto

    It's called "multi-tasking" Jack... maybe the GOP should look into that!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  262. Gregory H. from Los Angeles, CA

    Jack

    It appears that everything outside of the Economy is a distraction to the ruplician party. Is it possible for a President to focus on more then one thing at a time? George W.Bush sent his entire Presidency focused on the war in Iraq and left the country in shambles. If the stem cell reversal is a distraction we need more distractions.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  263. Stephanie from Montreal

    President Obama just can't win. If he keeps to various his campaign promises (as he should), he's "distracting" himself from the economy. If he ignores all his other priorities, he's a liar. With the abundance of time they now have on their hands, the GOP ought to be able to do more than criticize and whine.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  264. James in TN

    How about we complain about everything the President does. If people stopped complaining and write the President their own plan like he has asked numerous times then maybe he just may do something the ones complaining likes. I wonder how many have done that?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  265. Rick

    I love it!! The republicans are now scrabling like the tazmanian devil in the cartoons.....still have yet to figure out why Mr. Boehner has a tan and he's from Ohio....oh well, maybe this research will figure that out......

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  266. Robert, Miami, FL

    I don't think that we should be making embryos that are not implanted right away. But if we are, then I agree with President Obama.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  267. Clay Wild

    Jack the fact that Republicans are criticizing President Obama of creating a "distraction" is just plain ridiculous. The fact of the matter is this is not an immoral practice and in the long run it will stimulate the economy. Stem cell research has the power to cure hundreds of diseases that will expand the U.S. average life span, and diminish the economic toll of health care on the average American family. Republicans cannot come up with any alternative to the President's plan, therefore they are forced to betray the average American in an effort to forward their own ridiculous agendas, and this is the perfect example of it.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  268. Schummer from NY

    In order to confuse politics/ideology with science one must know the difference between the two. Obama does, Bush did not.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  269. Mike Shapiro

    Instead of having a real discussion about policies and idiology, the Republican leadership, such as it is, is automatically disagreeing with everything the President says or does and will rationalize in any way convenient and then call him a Socialist. Amazing.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  270. paul

    what the distraction here is is the gop calling this policy reversal a distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  271. LA

    Of course they're right...just like they were right about WMD in Iraq, Social Security reform, the severity of Katrina, global warming, de-regulation of big business and banks, torture...with right like that, who needs wrong?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  272. Kareem

    Republicans are a distraction from reality.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  273. Peg Blackman

    We are glad our President can tackle more than one issue at a time – we know lives will be saved because he didn't wait until later.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  274. Christopher, CA

    This is not a distraction this can save lives and is essential to our country cant wait for this to actually have bigger implications and help people like it could have before Bush happened.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  275. Robert of Lake Jackson, Texas

    Absolutely NOT.... I'm all 4 stem cell research. I applauded Obama’s multi-pronged attack on the problems plaguing America. I hope he's able to accomplish everything he's sought out to do. I have faith he will.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  276. Thomas

    By reversing originally wrong policies signed in by Bush, Obama is righting a very serious wrong. It sounds to me like the GOP is doing a bit of distracting from the turmoil in their own party themselves.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  277. Typical

    As usual – Republicans can only do ONE thing at a time, and even then they aren't very good at that. Why doesn't this typical insane Republican response surprise me?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  278. Jeff in E. Lyme, CT

    Anybody who takes the time to gripe about policy reversal that takes no more time & effort than the 5 minutes to read & sign it is the one who is trying to create a "Distraction". The GOP really is a mess, isn't it?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  279. Al, Lawrence KS

    Just who is doing the distracting here....I've moved on, the President will move on, the Republicans, not so much. My guess is the Boehner, Cantor, Gingrich, and Rush will be beating this dead horse for days to come. Ignore them and they might go away.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  280. DICK RUBINOFF

    STEM CELL ADVANCES A DISTRACTION ???? ASK OUR FREINDS IN THE REPUBLICAN PARTY IF THEY CAN WALK AND TALK AT THE SAME TIME.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  281. Judy Mascolino

    No, it's not a distraction. Obama does not operate that way. He is simply busy accomplishing all that is GOOD for our government and our people.
    In case you haven't noticed, Obama is very able to multi-task and we'd better get used to it! Obama as president is the only bright spot in our dismal situation. So far, I have agreed with every single thing that he has done.

    Judy Mascolino
    Fox River Grove, IL

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  282. Dicky Neely

    Hi Jack,
    Some of these Republicans will say and do anything to derail anything Obama wants to do.
    Stem cell research and other research that has been blocked or slowed down under Bush could be of huge benefit to mankind and these few, these power coveting obstructionist sore losers, don't care about anything but regaining power.
    Dicky Neely
    Corpus Christi, Tx.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  283. ELISA WILLIAMS

    Jack, After G W Bush, Dick Cheney, Carl Rove, and who else is attached to the big three, I don't believe a thing that the Republicans say!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  284. Lou

    I think the Republicans and their Ideological war is a distraction from the Economy. All their Hate-Mongering which is entrenched in Wall Street is what is driving down the market.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  285. Armeen Neshat

    Only if they admit that placing the ban in the first place was one too.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  286. Patrick McGee

    Distraction? Is stem cell research a distraction, like Teri Shaivo was? Or perhaps gay marriage? How about Slick Willy's love life? I think not. The Republicans would love to create another distraction, but stem cell research is wildly popular, not only in this country, but around the world. Stem cell research is PROGRESS, not a distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  287. L.S. Ramos

    Jack,

    Who's actually using the decision as a distraction? I seem to see more Republicans throwing the decision in the spotlight so they can complain about it instead of work to find reasonable compromises regarding the economy.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  288. Thomas

    Absolutely jack!! We should keep our eye on the ball!! With 12 million Americans out of work the economy should be priority one plain and simple!! If they wanted to reverse the bush policies in the future that's fine however we have much bigger problems to deal with right now!!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  289. Mark

    He is doing what he said on the campaign trail which is multitasking. I believe this President is smart enough to accomplish more than I thing at a time.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  290. William North Carolina

    It is not a distraction if you can't walk, have Parkinson's disease or other nerve disorders. Boehner and Eric Canter reveal once again just how callous that these people are towards the problems of others. Their whole philosophy toward the economy, toward business and now toward people is remarkably the same... just "let them fail."

    These people have become a boil on the buttocks of our country.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  291. Odell Norman

    No......He's doing what a President needs to do his job!!! There is not a big enough distraction in the world that can take our minds off of the mess the last administration has left us in!!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  292. Ann in Asheville, NC

    The Complain Party (AKA Republicans) call this a distraction? Try telling that to the millions that may benefit from the research. I think our very smart and compassionate President (we finally have one!) has the ability to do multiple things at once. So can we. Can we please stop giving Republicans a disproportionate amount of airtime, and get on with talking about real issues?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  293. Bob D. Morristown

    The ideologist Republicans criticize everything about Obama, including the way he breathes (or the fact that he does) Unlike our previous president, Obama can walk, chew gum, and do other things, all at the same time.

    The very same hypocrits who criticize him for not attending exclusively to the economy are the ones who criticize him for acting to restore the economy. They should rename their party to "Hypocrits-Ar-Us".

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  294. Scott in NYC

    I think that the Repubs like to call any progress in this administration a destraction. I dont think anyone can be destracted from the epic failure/mess that the last 8 years has left us...

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  295. Tommye

    No, I do not think it is a distraction. He is merely fulfilling another campaign promise (unusual, I know for a politician to do this). At the same time, he is proving that a President can do more than one thing at a time contrary to the previous administration who couldn;t seem to walk and chew gum at the same time.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  296. Bruce, Georgia

    Glad to see the Republicans see this as a distraction from the economic issues, therefore they won't try and bog us down in a long discussion about this after all we did have an election and Obama did promise to do this. Silly me of course not, the Republicans will continue to use every opportunity to distract and keep the economy from recovering because what the Republicans fear most is an economic recovery before the next election. Economy Issue 1, but who wants what?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  297. Colin

    This is certainly not a distraction, if anything it will help boost the economy by providing jobs. It's time to stop injecting politics into science and start making progress in a field of research that can produce a large number of positive results.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  298. Dodie From Irvine, California

    Stem cell research will help jump start the economy. It will end up being like the car, airplane and internet. The next step is Stem cell. Not only because of the curing potential but also because we are well aware of DNA and RNA but we know little about cell information/knowledge past from generation to generation. This will become a MAJOR break through for mankind!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  299. Jim in Boca

    A distraction? Unlike some other administrations, this one seems quite capable of walking and chewing gum at the same time. Keep knockin' 'em down, Barack.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  300. Jesse

    Absolutely not! Through the stimulus bill, the Obama Administration is spending in the field of research and development. Investment in this area has been shown to most effectively spruce up THE GDP. The money being spent on embryonic stem cell research is just one part of this investment to rebuild our economy. And, subsequently create more jobs.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  301. Yann S.

    Hey Boehner: before you go talking about killing innocent life, think about the people you are killing and you let die and suffer from diabetes, hypertension, chronic diseases by not providing universal healthcare coverage (and spinning that term negatively to "socialized healthcare"), siding with insurance companies who treat OUR health as business and not a right.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  302. garrick

    hi jack
    the GOP is taking away from the economy not the President,they have become the biggest joke in politics and just dont have any ideas besides to just look stupied.they need to find a new job,where they wont have to speak.
    clearwater,fl

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  303. TZ

    Yes it is a destraction. Obama loves to come out at around noon est gather a bunch of people that support him and tell them what they want to hear and create good pr for himself. And cnn if right there to help him do it. It seems to even qurstion obama on cnn is an oucward moment. HEY OBAMA ITS THE ECONOMT STUPID!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  304. D. Donnelly

    You've got to be kidding. Stem cell is a way to literal human life. Understand it too will create jobs. Anything to complain about–those Republicans. How can one take his/her mind off the stimulus package & the other two money issues? Dumb dumb. Write a book, Jack, about Book for Republican Dummies.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  305. Jim Blevins

    This is plain and simple obstructionism - trying to make an issue out of a simple matter that was clearly decided in the election. In no way does this distract from the economy. The American people made a clear choice about both, it is time that the Republicans accept that fact and stop trying to stop what the American people want.

    Jim, Craig, CO

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  306. NANCY M.- Colorado

    The distraction has one name "Republican". The stem cell that opponents call "murder" is actually the right thing to do to benefit others. How, then, would it not be "murder" to destroy those same stem cells as has been done in the past. We didn't hear that label attached to that practice from the Republicans and others before this.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  307. John Hackett

    Republicans are right .... FAR RIGHT...

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  308. Darren Richmond

    Of course they're right...of the political spectrum. That's why they lost the election.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  309. Charles Elbert

    Well Jack it seems that the Republican's do not think that our President does not have the ability to multi-task. LIsten my only concern is about human life if there is a way to do stem cell research without partial birth abortion let fund it. We could be wasting money on other pork that is not worth our representatives time nor vote.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  310. Maggie Gunter

    No way Jack.. The President is able to multi task and based on the cards that he was dealt, it is crucial that he do just that. That was is the issue with the previous administration. I think he is doing a great job.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  311. Katherine from Cotati

    No! The republics are NOT correct. President Obama said that the President has to do more than ONE THING AT A TIME! And he is correct. He is proving that it would have been a disaster if McCain had won. At his and the "Pubs'" pace, it would take a hundred years to fix what is broken in America today. Thank God we have a president who is not afraid to tackle the problems we face. And, IT IS MORE THAN ONE THING!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  312. Cecile Dobelbower

    I really fail to see how stem cell research can be a distraction to the economy. The Republicans simply have to have a negative comment to make every time Obama draws a breath. I don't believe it would be productive for the president to simply wait until his plan to stimulate the economy starts working before he moves to another project. Give me a break.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  313. Monica in LA

    Jack, what the Republicans who are criticizing President Obama's ability to do more than one thing at once are forgetting is John McCain and "suspending" his campaign to deal with the collapsing economy. President Obama won the respect of millions of American during that fiasco because as he put it at that time, the leader of the free world needs to be able to handle a multitude of problems and priorities all at once. These guys seem to NEVER learn from their own sordid history.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  314. Sheldon

    The Republican Party would like to pretend that "Presidents" focus on one thing at a time, and at this moment, that thing is the economy. Well, let me tell them something, if the American people had to deal with all the things that a President deals with on a daily basis, we would all be gray by now. The Republican Party currently has no voice, and quite frankly, I think they and their leader Rush Limbaugh is a major distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  315. David

    Distraction?! How long does it take to sign an executive order? That's one of those things you can do in between all those meetings with your economic team. Plus, it's another promise fulfilled. Imagine, a president keeping his promises. What's next?

    David

    New York

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  316. Ken in NC

    The government and Republicans got so used to Former President Bush doing one thing at a time that they cannot keep straight when a president with a real brain takes office and starts doing more than one thing at a time. So anything else he does other than what they want him to do is a distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  317. Alan Leff

    Jack,the Republicans are the distraction from the economy!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  318. jeff crider

    President Obama's decision was a bold step forward for medicine, for education, for science and for the economy. Let those with a "Flat Earth" doctrine continue to live in the Dark Ages. Give me light.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  319. Curt Barlow

    I think it just shows the President Obama can "walk and chew gum at the same time." (guess that dates me doesn't it)

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  320. paul

    actually by making this decree Obama removes this from being a distraction ,of course the gOP is singing the ringo starr song No NO NO

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  321. Kodi

    If Obama wanted to spend a week trying to ban abortion or making it more difficult for sex discrimination victims to file lawsuits, I doubt if the social conservative minority in Congress would be sniveling about the time it took. He spent about ten minutes signing the stem cell paperwork, leaving a full day to work on the economy.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  322. Sheri in Tennessee

    Jack, stem-cell research isn't a distraction, but a spotlight on the need for sound scientific research into the diseases that have plagued too many for too long. I'd wager the entire stimulus that those who object to it now would be first in line to benefit from it if they ever needed to.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  323. Bob Weil

    No! The real distraction is from the sour-grapes conservatives who arre more concerned with taking potshots at Obama than in solving real problems.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  324. R.Cortes, Hawaii

    Republicans need to stop looking for rubbish to argue about. What we need to do as Americans is upport our current President and try to help instead of bringing sutpid and unnecesary arguments to the table. This type of garbage is the DISTRACTION they themselves talk about. Shut up and do something for once. You had two terms to do something for us and instead you brought this Nation to where it is now. So, if I was you, I'll try to make myself useful for once.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  325. Dan

    Do the republicans do ANYTHING...beside criticizing every decision or move our President does? It seems like no matter what he's trying to do ..fix the economy, fix the housing, save GM and Chrysler or any other task he's being criticized every step of the way....Am I missing something or is this the job of the republicans to say NO to everything?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  326. Rian McMurtry

    Much as a distraction from the economy would be welcome, this is just another example of bad and/or dumb Bush policy being corrected. Too bad Salazar didn't get that memo.

    Davis, California

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  327. Jess Eagle

    The President should be focusing on the economy, but he should also be dedicating some time to other things. The government can't focus solely on the economy, because other factors go into making a healthy economy, like healthy citizens, which stem cell research will hopefully eventually create.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  328. Mark

    The reversal on stem cell research is good for the economy. I'm so happy we are coming out of the dark ages driven into by the Bush administration, that I'm going to go out and celebrate and spend some money. Cheers to all those waiting on a cure to make their lives better!!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  329. Reg

    To the Republicans everything is a distraction, except their outdated ideas and idiology. Lets face it when it comes to science we would still be looking for the invention of the wheel, if we adhere to their phylosphy. Can't they see that advances in stem cell research, and science, will lead to new treatment and eradication of disease, which will stimulate the economy and create new jobs! Da!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  330. Joe from Virginia

    There is not a single Republican who has done anything to help out with the mess this country is in. Not one Republican has stepped forward to introduce legislation or attempted to help this country from the worst economic shape in history. Their previous leader has bankrupted this nation and

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  331. Dale (Seattle)

    Yes it is thank goodness. I can't handle anymore gloom and doom. It's called multitasking and the ability to think about several subjects at the same time. Not pandering to extremists. I really like the proposed "new" ideas for fixing the economy from the republican's, don't you?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  332. Scott

    The answer is clearly No.The GOP are just trying to pass blame to protect their own conservative agenda.The republicans have held us back for years,hopefully their grasp on all of our lives is coming to an end!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  333. Jeff B.

    How pathetic of the Republicans to think that our new President can only focus on one thing at a time. Perhaps the last eight years has set a new low standard on expectations.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  334. Rich

    President Obama's progress on stem cell research is as much a distraction to progress on the US's economy as is a passing car to a driver; its just something else occurring while something else is being done. It was a good move, it happened quickly, he's back on the economy. Get over it.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  335. george

    It seems the hapless Republican Party has resorted to the old magicians trick of misdirection. No! It is not a distraction. It is one signature on one day. The economic crisis will be dealt with for months and years. The sad thing about a two party system is that the minority party has no incentive to cooperate with the majority. Hell, Jack, if they did, and Obama succeeds, who would need the Republicans any more? They have one agenda. Regaining the Congress and the White House. It is all they have talked about since the election, and they will gladly tank the economy further their political agenda.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  336. Blake, CA

    It is not a distraction. What is a distraction is the Republican attempt to make it one.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  337. Purnell Kankakee lL.

    This country has done nothing to make it’s so called healthcare system better, the only bureacy that exists in this country’s healthcare system comes from the Insurance companies, they are the gate keepers, and you all know it, they decide if you get care, and most of the time they so no, they allow people to get sicker, and die so that they can get richer!!! Admit it it’s not the government that is stopping you from getting affordable healthcare its insurance companies! We do not need them!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  338. Mike in Glenmoore, PA

    Jack, I don't think the president is causing a distraction from our economic woes by simply spending a few seconds signing a document to clear the way for scientific research. Rather, it's the Republicans who are trying to use the stem cell story to distract from the fact that their party has no economic solutions and has become a party of extreme right-wing whiners.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  339. LARRY PFEIFFER

    IT SEEMS THAT THE REPUBLICANS CAN'T CHEW GUM AND WALK AT THE SAME TIME. IF YOU ARE DRIVING DOWN THE HIGHWAY AND THE TRAFFIC IS TO FAST FOR YOU, YOU HAVE TWO CHOUCES. GET USED TO THE SPEED OR PULL OVER AND GET THE HELL OUT OF THE WAY.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  340. Mr Dean n Seattle

    don't we have to wait to hear what Rush has to say?
    after all he's the voice of the republican party , these other guys are just whiners.
    all they know is tax cuts and more tax cuts

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  341. Dean A Batha

    Distraction? Nonsense. All it required of President Obama was his signature on a sheet of paper. It's no more of a distraction for him to sign it than it is for you to report about it (less, actually). The Republicans are complaining about this because they don't like it and because they need something to complain about. Perhaps they are the ones distracting the public from real issues. But there's nothing new about that.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  342. Lisa, Ohio

    Jack,
    I wonder if Newt Gingrich would be calling this an "idealogical sideshow" if his child or grandchild was paralyzed from a spinal cord injury? If any of the Republican critics lived my life for a week, they may think differently. This can be a priority, along with the economy. There are people and their families who are desperate for a cure for many debilitating conditions. They deserve a chance for hope.
    Lisa,
    Ohio

    March 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  343. Nate From Michigan

    The Republicans are the distraction. If they could suck it up and get behind this President, then people would have much more confidense.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  344. Dolores Warren

    I think the president is taking care of all the issues he can while he is waiting for the things he implemented to turn the economy around.

    It didn't get bad overnight. Where were all of you when Bush was president and let this stuff happen under your noses?

    President Obama has only been in office for 2 months.......give him a break! IMHO he's doing a fantastic job.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  345. frankie

    If Presdent Obama took a walk and started out on his left foot, the Republicans would say, with sad voices, that this was a distraction from the economy. If President Obama took a walk and started out on his right foot, the Republicans would carefully analyze this and say that it was a distraction from the economy. The Republicans need to be quite now.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  346. Esta

    No, it is not a distraction. The Republicans are just not used to a President who can do more than one thing at a time.

    They are also making this claim to try to bring up their approval rating. I am sure that this claim will not help them either. They should really strive to come up with new ideas and stop being so negative. Right now, the Republicans serve no purpose. They are a distraction.
    They should really let President Obama do his extremely difficult job, a job that was caused primariliy by the Republicans running the country.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  347. Michael

    President Obama is just fulfilling another one of his promises he made to the american people. Something the republicans should try sometime.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  348. Tanya Drench

    It's only a distraction if you are incapable of thinking/doing more than one thing at a time. So far the only mastery the republicans have displayed is whining!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  349. Kevin, Indiana

    The only way this would be a distraction is if we let it run the usual course of 4 years of debate with nothing accomplished. The president knew this and did the right thing with one stroke of the pen. Everyone knows someone whose life would have been saved by this research.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  350. Mike Stanton

    Our Republican president could only do one thing at a time, like either walk OR chew gum. Republicans don't understand about intelligent leaders, like Barack Obama, who can brilliantly multi-task and never miss a beat!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  351. Michael, Portland Oregon

    Jack,

    There is no distraction for over 70% of the American populace that supports the use of stem cell research from all sources of stem cells. One again the GOP shows that it is completely out of step with the vast majority of the US. I think that is a good thing. It is about time that the American governement governed from and for the majority instead of a narrow, blinkered minority.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  352. Dane M.

    I guess the Republicans know a thing or two about distractions. Weren't they the ones that gave us proposed constitutional amendments on gay marriage and flag burning when the rest of the country was trying to focus on the unfathonable speed at which the Iraq war was going down the toilet?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  353. Jeff Stellitano

    Clearly, the republicans will do whatever possible to hang on to old policies. The American people are not fooled. Rarely is it seen that a president moves forward with his campain promises, especially with such haste. The idea of it is very exciting and I see Obama as an all purpose cleaning spray. He's cleaning the junk out of the white house that has festered over the years.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  354. Lynn, Columbia, Mo..

    I think the Republicans are a huge distraction from the economy. My father, husband and I may all benefit from this research. Cures would be alot cheaper healthcare and help the economy in many ways. Common sense no brainer.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  355. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Obama's stem cell reversal is a distraction to the Republicans because it interferes with their agenda which has nothing to do with the economy but a lot to do with politics.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  356. paul

    why do the republicans always seem to come down on the wrong side of everything...it's as if they don't want to retain supporters. i'm sick to death of being told what the moral high ground is by those who are morally bankrupt.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  357. Jesus Burgos

    To: The Caffertyfile
    Their is no way anyone can distract us away from the mess that the republicans have left us in. Just let our president do his job.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  358. Richard Sheffield

    No, of course not. Cantor is a litle old and confused... the President is not actually DOING the research, he just signed a piece of paper 🙂 I don't think it took too much time out of his day. Basic scientific research gave up the technology boom that has carried us for 20 years. Hopefully it will help us out again. We can't get ourselves out of this mess with marketing and financial services.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  359. NYC REPUB, Bx., NY

    We must understand that when a Republican president is in office, they ban stem cell research. When a democrat is in office, they remove the ban from stem cell research...... It's that simple.... So there's not much to get mad about. This is how it is. I really wish that the GOP would stop running for elections right now..... Please, wait until 2010, and 2012.......

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  360. Mary Jane Saffran

    Hi Jack,
    i don't understand what the republicans expect from the administration. The economy is going to take some time to "fix." Is everything else suppose to stop? I can't imagine that the reversal of Bush's stem cell policy took very much time away from the economy. Don't the politicians know that we get it? The republicans aren't going to agree with the democrats and vise versa. Can they stop playing politics long enough to help put our country back on track?

    Mary Jane NY

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  361. Luwa

    Are you kidding me? Republicans would rather have humans die from terrible things than to admit they are just like all of us who like to see our loved ones survive. They would not say these awful things if they were ill. I just think they are still having to go home everyday and ask their wives to pinch them 'cus they still can't believe Mr Obama is their President! Get over it and get to work..I am tired of all these attacks to our new Presindent who has the best in heart for ALL citizens of America!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  362. mary nelson

    Who cares if it is a distraction,...It is what we have needed for 8 yrs..God bless Obama for wanting to save lives by using stem cells that were going to be destroyed if not used for stem cell research.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  363. Don Starkweather

    How would it be a distraction, the economy is front page news and the talk of every news show in the world.

    I think its more like the GOP whining like a bunch of 4 year old girls. I think it's time they shut up and start acting like the officials there supposed to be. Heaven forbid that we have a president that is willing to do more than wage fruitless wars and screw America up.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  364. Luke

    DISTRACTION?! Of course the GOP would throw that bull out there, they will say anything to try to hurt (but fail miserably) the Obama presidency! The GOP are still horribly bitter about losing the elections and the majority (again) and they won't give up! President Obama is doing a great thing and something that should have been done years ago! The GOP need to get out of the 50's state of mind and adapt to the changing times and the calls of these times, if they don't, they will soon go extinct...that may actually be a good thing. GOP, quit hurting yourself and learn to work together, YOU are the reasons there is still the same old bi-partisan bull in Congress still! Get over the fact that McCain lost and that your last president was a total idiot!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  365. mike, ohio

    Jack, President Obama is trying to get the business of the American people done that he promised on the campaign trail. He said during his campaign, that Presidents should be able to do more than one thing at time. The Republicans haven’t been listening to the American people and that’s why their approval ratings are in the tank and the party is in shambles. I’m with you on the irrelevance of the Republican party, they just don’t get it!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  366. Kim

    No Jack. If the Republicans think that this is the distrction, they don't have to use the cures that comes out of stem cell research. They can watch people get cure.
    President Obama is doing every thing he possible can to fix the eight years of damage. It's not even two months yet. Have some patience.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  367. Claire, Melbourne, FL

    Right?!? They haven't been right on anything for the last 8 years. It's their distraction and I hope they're ignored. Finally science will prevail and we can get moving into the 21st century for a change!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  368. B. K.

    the republicans are spinning so fast at all the positive things Obama is doing that they are simply spewing whatever they think might stick with anyone who might be listening to them......they want to wallow in the past while finally we are heading into the future.....with or without them. It would be funny if it weren't so sad, watching them trying to sound 'principled', all the while talking as if the last eight years did not happen.....there way of governing simply did not work......as the current situation of the country, in the way they left it, plainly proves.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  369. Lee in MN

    The GOP is looking for distractions from the lousy job they did over the past 8 years creating this mess. That included the freeze on stem cell research and 20% reduction in NIH/HHS Funding. I have ALS/Lou Gehrigs disease and Federal Research Funding and stem cell research is our only hope as there is NO Cure today. Remember, the human embryo research was to be done on cells that were being destroyed. It is time the the GOP that are against everything get their facts straight. I would gladly let any politician spend a week in my life or anyone else with a fatal disease. I believe Erik Cantors state needs a massive investment in improving their education if he is a measurement.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  370. Alain

    Jack,

    I wonder.....

    Do red herrings have stem cells ?

    Alain

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  371. ralph

    Jack, It sure didn't distract me from checking my 401 today or to notice the FDIC is looking for some additional, and substantial shoring up. And why doesn't John Boehner who says the president has rolled back important protections for innocent life and further divided the country comment on how evading Irag rolled back protections for innocent life and divided the country.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  372. Kevin Braunsdorf

    How is it that the loudmouths over at the GOP even have a voice to complain with? Or credibility? Or an audience to care?

    Before we decide “not” to prosecute these bastions of free enterprise, lets take a moment to recollect exactly who’s watch this disaster happened on in the first place.

    The GOP needs to sit down and shutup before we remember who’s fault this really is!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  373. Rhonda

    Jack, It's only a distraction if you can't walk and chew gum at the same time... oh. Republicans. Well, I have to say yes, that it probably is too much for them. They haven't shown much of the ability to do one thing at once, much less two. I USED to be a Republican. Now when the talk, all I hear is poorly trained parrots.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  374. EILEEN.. Austintown, OHIO

    Seems to me the Republicans are attempting to distract attention from THEIR obstructionism....by citeing President Obama being devisive by advancing medical research (stem cell)...to cover the economy that was dealt to our country by the Republicans.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  375. Rex Young

    I understand that the Republicans aren't necessarily used to the ability and competence of a president to focus on more than one thing at a time, in citing the last 8 years. But many Americans understand that Obama is trying to handle the inherited economic disaster and not pretend as if other issues require no attention simply because they are blurred in the mess. Finally, we have an opportunity to attempt reversal of the Bush era setbacks with a multi-tasking approach. The Republicans know it will serve them little to give the deserved credit to Obama, but I can think of about 40 distractions in the Senate that I hope we start taking care of in 2010.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  376. Susan McGreevy

    Only to the nit-picking Republicans who are hell-bent on trying to find something wrong with our new Democratic President. The rest of us are both grateful and relieved to finally have someone with intellect and vision who is taking all the right steps to improve our quality of life and get our Country back on top again.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  377. Eric S

    I am 100% behind President Obama and feel we are victims of the 24/7 instant "news" cycle. Most of the so called "news" coverage is talking heads using references I wouldn't bet on and more "opinion news making" than news reporting.

    Most of us need to calm down, and watch the rich scream that a president isn't giving them what they want, more money to clean up their mess.

    We are victims of the rich trying to get richer with no rules or values.

    Patience people, buy low and sit back and watch them jump.

    Eric

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  378. Matthew from Orange, CA

    Yes, it is a distraction and a dangerous one. Do you know how many jobs will be lost if people with Parkenson's or multiple-sclerosis or Alzheimers' or any number of diseases and disfunctions suddenly get a treatment that can return their mobility and ability to function as a regular American Worker?

    Believe it or not, the above may in fact raise its head as a sanctioned Republican arguement against the promise of this research.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  379. Anjelique

    There is no such thing as a "distraction" from the current economic crisis. Its inescapable. We are a nation of many many issues. Don't hate the man just b/c he can multi-task!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  380. Rajeev

    It boggles the mind that the Republicans are so caught up in saving the embryos that they would rather let real live people just die. I guess their dogma blinds them to scientific truth – whether it is the benefits of stem cell research or the truth about climate change. Is this really the 21st century?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  381. John Early

    It's unfortunate that the GOP was not this vocal when the Bush administration pulled all of their stunts. I applaud our President for keeping his campaign promises and trying to get this Country back where we should be. No, this is not a distraction from the Democrats. In calling this a distraction the GOP is trying to distract Americans from seeing how "short-sighted" the Republicans are and the fact that they do not want our President to succeed, which means they do not want the Country to succeed. Let's not forget, as apparently the GOP has, that 8 years of failed policy and lack of transparency put us in this mess.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  382. Fred May Sr Spanaway WA.

    Now that Stem Cell research is back in the news, I would like to express my views on the issue.
    If I make it to July 29, I will be 84 years of age. For my third birthday my parents took me to a bathing beach to celebrate. One week later I became the victim of Polio. In the 20 s and 30 s there were many many more victims. There was no curer for this decease. From age 3, I have had to wear a full leg brace to walk. But that is my problem.
    I never knew what it was to run and play like other kids or run and play with my son as he was growing up. Today there are thousands of young war victims who have lost arms and legs. Just think of the possibilities through cell research that a young injured service man or lady could have a hand or foot or leg regrowned. Yes using embryos for research is taking a life. My question is this, Allowing these embryos to be destroyed isn’t that destroying a life? Is the owner of these embryos willing to pay for storage forever? Is the Government going to use tax payer money to pay forever to keep these embryos? Let’s look at a larger picture. 20,000 plus injured people having to go through life maimed for life in a war started on false information. The possibilities of repairing thier body’s so they can go back to a normal life are there. The possibilities of someone injured in some kind of accident could have the severed part replaced.
    , All this might be only a dream but we will never know. What are they going to do with the reported 600,000 embryos in storage now? I don’t know how much you are into the subject, but I hope you can try to change the thinking in Washington DC. The people who need help deserve to get it.
    Thank you for taking the time to read this email.
    Spanaway, WA

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  383. Pat, Fayetteville, NC

    The President's reversal of "W" stem cell research is not a distraction from the focus on the economy. The Republicans are irrevelant and they are trying to stay in the lime light much like they did when Mr. Clinton was president. If you recall, when there was a chance to get bin Ladin, they stipulated he was "wagging the dog" and the offshore bombing destroyed a medical drug facility. Get real!

    Republicans and the media are trying to distract the President from his agenda by accusing him of taking on to much. He has proven that he can walk and chew gum at the same time.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  384. Andrew, FL

    Jack, for eight years science has been replaced by political and religious ideology. Religion is great when it is practiced in harmony with science. Take Gregor Mendel for instance, he was a priest and the father of modern day genetics.

    We have lost so much time in this area, allowing countries such as Japan to blow past us in the realm of science and embryonic stem cell research. With this reversal, we can finally allow scientists to again do what they do best. That is to save lives.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  385. mike b, San Antonio

    No, they are wrong. We all knew that President Obama planned on changing the Bush policy regarding stem cell research. I am a Republican, but I can't fault President Obama for doing what he said he would do. I do, however, question his lack of foresight when it comes to a young, struggling democracy in Iraq. Should we leave Iraq when it is vulnerable only to have to go back? Shouldn't we see the job through after such a large investment in American funds and most importantly, American blood?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  386. Bill

    You usually don't allow my comments but maybe this time. I liken the ban on stem cell research to the burning of witches. Many reasons here but it is that same area of ignorance and archaic thought that has potentially killed many more now than in Salem times. Fanatics of the right should be very ashamed of themselves and historically these recent years should be viewed as a very dark period for research.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  387. Dean A Batha, Asheville NC

    Distraction? Nonsense. All it required of President Obama was his signature on a sheet of paper. It’s no more of a distraction for him to sign it than it is for you to report about it (less, actually). The Republicans are complaining about this because they don’t like it and because they need something to complain about. Perhaps they are the ones distracting the public from real issues. But there’s nothing new about that.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  388. Lisa, Ohio

    Jack,
    I wonder if Newt Gingrich would be calling this an “idealogical sideshow” if his child or grandchild was paralyzed from a spinal cord injury? If any of the Republican critics lived my life for a week, they may think differently. This can be a priority, along with the economy. There are people and their families who are desperate for a cure for many debilitating conditions. They deserve a chance for hope.
    Lisa,
    Ohio

    March 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  389. Walter

    No...it is not a distraction from the economy issue. It, like everything else the Bush administration did, needed to be revised. The distractions from the econmy with the Bush admistration was a war, torture, illegal wire taps, the list goes on and on.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  390. leo

    I'm a democrat but I know that Obama made a lot of promises, including stem cell. But the status of our economic stability has changed. And. If you. Don't get. A handle. & stop our economic bleeding, nothing. Else will matter if. We fail.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  391. Steven T

    They are desperate. Their party is in shambles. It's like playing king of the hill as a kid. The kids (conservatives) are trying to knock the kid on top (Obama) down the hill. They are so negative as a party. I don't see how they can control congress any time soon.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  392. Jackie

    I think the Republicans are the distraction to everyones' effort to turn the economy around. Since the Obama's administration started, all they did was speculate on speculations. Let's move this economy forward together, shall we. One leader at a time.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  393. Noor

    Isn't anything and everything he does, that is not about the economy, a distraction from the economy. Isn't focusing on Iraq or Afghanistan a distraction from the economy? Isn't healthcare a distraction from the economy? Man! Some Republicans can be so illogical!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  394. Kay, O'Brien, OR

    Mr. Obama can multitask and chew gum at the same time. So can the folks who voted for him. The economy is the 600-pound gorilla in the room, no matter what.. When I read of Mr. Obama's stem cell reversal action, I went right out and, like a good consumer, spent some money to celebrate. I promise, I'll spend a LOT in celebration when the current majority and minority speakers of the House and Senate quit their jobs.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  395. JJ

    What is wrong with us? We all have someone in our lives that could use the help by passing this! Have we become so caught up in our everyday lives that we forget we still need to succeed as a group. You think the Taliban would care about our kids while we all sit on our deathbeds with a form of cancer that could have been prevented. We should look at this as a new source of income invest in the idea, develop the idea to a cure, then sell and help others? What is wong with us?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  396. mark

    Stem cell research is so overdue! What a joke that the Republican party has apparently become distracted by this! It reminds me of when McCain wanted to discontinue his campaign to go back to Washington to deal with the looming econmic crisis. It seems the Republicans are still able to focus on only one problem at a time.

    Mark
    San Diego

    March 9, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  397. walt Utah

    Jack,

    IT"S THE ECONOMY STUPID"...not Stem Cell Research

    IT"S THE ECONOMY STUPID"...not Health care Reform

    IT"S THE ECONOMY STUPID"...not Rush Limbaugh

    We are not COWARDS as Eric Holder states, but this President had better get his act together real fast because he is scaring the hell out of a lot of AMERICANS

    March 9, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  398. Bert

    I am very proud every time President Obama reverses any of the stupid rules that the idiot Bush put in place. I want to jump up and shout because we have a real intelligent person in the Whitehouse now. By the way, I am from the most racist state in the union (Oklahoma) where all of the counties voted for McCain. Keep up the good work Jack.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  399. johnchristopher

    Yeah, Obama has a lot of distractions. Cleaning up after Bush is a big enough job for any new president, but Obama has more important things to do than having to reverse bad Bush polices. Republicans see everything as a distraction from their sacred ideology. Republicans need to shut up for awhile. They have no genuine ideas. They are bankrupt of solutions. They need to figure out who they are and how to avoid irrelevance.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  400. David, MD

    Jack,
    Do not pay attention to the guys who can only say "no". If these guys were being given a pay raise by Obama they will say "no" before they even think about it. If they cannot multi-task, it does not mean that other people also cannot. What they are trying to do is one thing and one thing only: Slow Obama's momentum at all costs. It's a shame.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  401. Geri

    NO NO NO NO distraction, the republicans need to start doing more than one thing at a time, just like President Obama. . Seems all the republicans want is to make the rich richer, gosh forbid we save lives through the stem cell research, and oh my goodness, lower the cost of illnesses that we all have to pay for one way or another, how many sicknesses can be cured. Republicans do not see any of that, it doesn't put money in their pocket book

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  402. mike cleveland

    Jack I think we need a distraction I wonder could pres.Obama do anything that would be seen as a positive to the right wing .i guess we should all just sit around and watch the dow go down and hope for Rush to save us.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  403. Susan from Los Angeles

    Of course it is a distraction – but only to those who can't think about more than one problem at a time! This is a modern world with modern complexities... we can't tackle one thing at a time, and succeed. It is that simple. But to assume that the solution to one problem can't also contain the solution to others is oversimplifying our world, and is what got us in this mess in the first place!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  404. Maddy from MN

    It's amazing that they feel the need to critize a President who is able to focus on more than one issue at a time. After seeing the outcome of Iraq – the "distraction" from Afghanistan – you'd think they'd shut their traps. With more and more people supporting stem cell research, they're grasping at straws to find a new reason to oppose it, and it's a pathetic one indeed.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  405. Joe from Virginia

    There is not a single Republican who has done anything to help out with the mess this country is in.

    Not one Republican has stepped forward to introduce legislation or attempted to help this country from its worst economic shape in many years.

    Their previous leader, King George has bankrupted this nation and as additional millions will continue to lose their jobs and homes, all the Republicans can do is try to blame the current administration, which has been in office less than 60 days.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  406. John Kelley

    Stem cell research a distraction? – No, but I'll tell you what is a distraction. Republicans from Congressman Boehner to Cantor to McConnell, tRuss Limbaugh, to Fox News, to Joe Scarborough and his rantings against Obama, and all the things the Republicans did not do when they had power, and did get us in a war of their choice with a trillion dollar price tag, breaking the banks, destroying our 401Ks, and our jobs. How many lives have been lost because of Bush's political decision on stem cell research? Who knows.
    The Republicans have no credibility – none. And the only people who are giving any credibility to the Republicans are the Media for some strange reason.
    They, the Republican party with all the ideological Chicken Hawks got us into this mess and they are talking about stem cell research distracting everyone from what is our greatest crisis since the depression – they are nuts What a disgrace.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  407. Sabrina Palladino

    Hello Jack,
    It's time that we separate church and state, politics and science again if we are to ever pull ourselves out of this financial crisis. This is not a "Bush Administration" type smoke and mirrors distraction, only a Republican would interpret it as so. America needs to move into the 21st century in technical, scientific, and forward thinking practices. I never understood why the US wouldn't want to research stem cells... it's potentially breakthrough stuff and will make many people rich, a new flurry of stock to invest in and cure people of terrible ills and save countless lives... what's wrong with government when it doesn't want the best for it's people?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  408. george german

    jack i think the media is turning this issue into a distraction....big suprsise there.
    i hope this president contiues to open the economicly funded scientific flood gates and put money where the religous thinks right thinks it shouldent go.
    the republicans dident do such a great job running the country and this is a prime example of why.............politicising evrything including frozen tadpoles in cryo. lets make people walk again with this STUFF.

    regarding this topic or issue being a side show..............i wish i could just look back at the last eight years of republican leadership and just say it was a just a side show......oh well/.. reality bites.
    george
    chester,ct

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  409. william fitzwater

    Yes;
    I disagree Obamas decision but I voted for him. If I only voted on sigal issuess I would have voted with the Republicans whose policies I vigoursly disagree with .
    Politics is not a game of absolutes . You can disagree with a party on a singal issuess and largly support them. In the case of the Democrates I largely support them but on the issues of stem cells using discarded ebroys this is something I don't agree with them. This issue violates my faith.

    I feel this singal issue is a issue that distracts from the real problems in our countrty today. If I voted on singal issues then I would only vote Repbublican no matter what they do to the countrty and that just does not make any sense.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  410. Nancy in Virginia

    Oh please, Jack. Besides it was a campaign promise, it begins to take us out of the dark ages, and let's hope that we can have enough scientists hired to try and catch up to the rest of the world's research.

    I believe that I remember then candidate Obama say that he has the capacity to work on more than one fire at a time. I am thrilled that he has taken this step. Besides, I bet there is more than one team working on more than one issue at the White House. We have much to fix.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  411. teauna s. Mill Creek,WA

    I am a christen woman raised in a Republican household.. I have to admit the Republican behavior of late has disgusted me and yes, I voted for Obama due to Repubs behavior.. what world are these people living in?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  412. patty pohlman

    toss out an embryo that might save an already alive & developed human? Right. What if it was your body that needed the stem cells-do you want to be tossed into a bag & dropped in the river ? Unlikely. Obama is catering to humanity; not the Bible-thumpers!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  413. Doug , FeedingHills , Mass.

    I have to admit, the Republicans certainly know a thing or two about distracting our attention from the economy. Can you say "WAR ON TERROR"? As usual however, their wrong again!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  414. Eric S

    A Questions for those against embryonic stem cell research–
    If a cure for whatever is ailing you or your child was created by embryonic stem cells, would you opt out?
    HMOs have denied so much curing care that in turn have killed/murdered so many, I can't wait for health care for ALL.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  415. Ed. ralph

    Anything that takes our mind off the economy can't be bad, especially if we can cure a multitude of diseases and injuries in the process.

    Toronto, Ontario

    March 9, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  416. Jack R

    Since the Eric Cantors of the world are reduced to this type and level of fault finding - it means Obama must be doing things right.

    Seriously, how much of Obama's time was taken to sign his name to this reversal, which even Saint Ronald Reagan's wife supports?

    Eris Cantor needs to grow up.

    Jack R Princeton NJ

    March 9, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  417. Karen

    Jack;
    Stem cell research revitalizes sectors of the economy, and simply reverses Bush's veto after overwhelming bipartisan support on this issue.
    Any religious people who oppose this are welcome to turn down any medical advances/procedures created by this important technology that might help their children or themselves, in order to save their souls.
    Amen.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  418. Josh from Texas

    Obama isn't the one causing the distraction here, the media is. All obama did was sign an executive order; there was no legislation on this issue. The only ones keeping this topic in dicussion are the media.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  419. Fred Mt. Vernon Ohio

    Yes Jack it is a distraction...Lets get back to the Economy Mess.....you know ,the ones the Republicans and their Wall Street and banker friends created for us. If you ask me it is a blessing to be thinking of something else and maybe they should keep their mouths shut for once and quit belly aching.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  420. Judy from Illinois

    If anyone is a distraction, it's the whole Republican Party. They come across as a bunch of whiners who have no solutions to todays problems. Is it so hard for them to realize we actually have a President who can multi-task. Something I'm sure the GOP knows nothing about! If they want to expand the Republican Party – how about showing some cooperation and/or ideas to help us get out of this mess.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  421. Richard Mallery

    No. Most of us are perfectly capable of walking and chewing gum at the same time, something that – along with taking the needs of our country to heart – Republicans have forgotten how to do.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  422. guy ferrell

    yes, they are correct.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  423. Alfred Thornton - Cazadero, CA

    How can the Republicans say anything when they do not have a leader to stand at the head of their party. Without a leader they could be talking out the side of their mouth. Do they all agree with this? Do they know what the real distraction is? Did they clear this with Rush Limbaugh?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  424. Tony in Michigan

    This is a valid issue that President Obama promised to address during the campaign. So, if this is a valid issue how can it be a distraction? Silly Republicans, when will they realize that they have become irrelevant?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  425. Andrea

    The distraction was Iraq. That has come at enormous loss of life.
    Embryonic stem cell research is the hope of the future. It might hold the cure for many diseases which now cost lives, quality of life and billions of dollars. Intellectual Science and Research needs to move forward.
    Finally, we have a President with above average thought processes and can handle more than one crisis at a time.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  426. Susan from Fayetteville, GA

    Distraction? There is more than one issue that the President must deal with and many promises he made. It's nice to see that this President has the ability to multitask.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  427. Stephanie

    You will see that this removal of this rediculous law is a great thing for so many people that have horrible medical problems from diabetes to Parkinson's. These people need the help that we can offer them to cure this. Sorry that people see this as a "Killing of life". How about see it as a "Saving the lives of the people who are alive".

    March 9, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  428. M of Michigan

    NO-I have been waiting for this for many years as have many other citizens of this country. I have yet to be told there is a cure right around the corner for my type1 diabetes, and after 45+ years with the disease I would like to see some progress made with my, and many other diseases. This will help the recovery as it will create jobs not just in research but in many other affiliated fields which will put citizens of this county to work. CNN should list the 'over 80 cures/treatments adult stem cells have provided. As for embryonic stem cells not providing one cure or treatment tell that to all of the type 1 diabetics that have a normal life today thanks to international studies and their participation in those studies.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  429. Dave, Vancouver, Canada

    Earmarks, healthcare reform, Michelle Obama's clothes and Rush What's-his-face are distractions from the economy. The president's stem cell reversal will be executed by executive order. Nobody needs to vote on it. It has only become a distraction because Republicans have made it a distraction. That's what they're good at. That and threatening to phillabuster the globe into a thirties-style depression.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  430. James, Sun City CA

    Eric Cantor and others like him are the distractions. I am amazed at the nits some folks find to pick. Mr Cantor apparently had nothing else to go on about today. I guess there aren't any serious policy issues for Repubs to think up an opinion on. These people need to get off their pogo sticks and settle down. They should be helping The USA, and the world, get out of the mess we are in, or they should get out of the way.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  431. miguel gonzales

    No Jack,it is not,and even if it were,it would be a welcome one.The president is doing the sensible thing because he understands the importance of science in our everyday lives,unlike the previous president who did not have the capacity to understand anything,apart from invading another country and causing the deaths of tens of thousands of innocent lives.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  432. Jack McKechnie

    Jack– the only thing distracting to me is to see Eric Cantor whine on national television. I usually end up turning the channel the minute he starts talking. The Republicans have no ideas and cling to disruption as their only policy. If they really wanted to gain another base they would send Mr. Cantor and Mr. Limbaugh to the curb and embrace Ron Paul ( the only Republican that makes any sense).
    Jack from Kentucky

    March 9, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  433. Grace in Boulder CO

    No, not at all. It was a topic of great conversation at the health care reform summitt last week (was I the only poor sap who watched it in it's entirety). A REPUBLICAN senator, Orrin Hatch R-Utah, (yes, a rebulican!, oh my!) strongly "encouraged President Obama to reverse Pres. Bush's" original bill and allow stem cell research. It was all in relation to SAVING money and helping PREVENTATIVE measures. The topic relates DIRECTLY to the ECONOMY and our long term sustainability.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  434. Joe Nehring, Iowa City, IA

    Dead wrong. Stem cell research is an innovative way to create efficiences in our health care system. It looks like key Republicans have taken the cue from their defacto leader and are making efforts to inhibit our President's efforts to bring this economy around.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  435. Jeff Huey

    Jack,
    I'm stuck in a wheelchair and don't like it.
    ESC research offers some of the most promising restorative therapies to help people with spinal cord injuries and other degenerative medical conditions.
    A distraction from the economy? The worldwide economic costs of spinal cord injury probably exceed US$66 billion per year. Estimates of spinal cord injury costs in the United States range from $10-$12 billion per year for the medical care and support costs for about 250,000 people with severe spinal cord injuries.
    A cure for spinal cord injuries will help the economy.

    Eric Cantor and his GOP minions need to educate themselves about the true cost of health care in this country.
    It also wouldn't hurt if they could learn to have a little compassion for people with conditions that could potentially be helped by ESC research. Isn't compassion a fundamental christian principle, and don't these guys claim to be christians?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  436. Dave Peterson - Madison, WI

    President Obama's action on embryonic stem cell research was not taken to provide a distraction from the problems of the economy. I'm sure the members of the so-called "Religious Right," who object to letting scientific advances proceed, will hold to their high principles when cures to diseases are found using these stem cells. They will, of course, refuse any treatment for themselves and their loved ones based on the result of embryonic stem cell research. My father-in-law used to say, "You can do something about ignorance, but stupidity is uncorrectable."

    March 9, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  437. Frank Vilardi, Montclair, NJ

    The fact that this administration can multitask is just a bit bit confusing to the Republicans. Obama is fixing something that was broken with the stroke of his pen. The scientists, not the religious zealots are in control of the science, what a unique concept.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  438. Allen in Hartwell GA

    Only the right-wing is distracted, and this is only to make a lot of noise about something that they think Americans are concerned about.
    In reality Americans as a whole could care less about stem-cell research, because whether the government gives money to it or not, it will go on – and that's a fact, Jack!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  439. Dan

    With the horrid news of the state of the economy echoing throughout the country like a continuous barrage of artillery fire on a battlefield, one would think that the economy would take precedence over everything else as it is inescapable to miss. I wonder what logic (if any) was used by the republicans to attempt to turn this into an issue.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  440. Ruth Shaver

    Of course they're wrong. The day the White House announced this signing today, a friend who retired from his position as a cell biologist got a call from a local biotech firm asking for his consulting help with stem cell growth as the company saw the potential for new business development (and thus more manufacturing jobs for our county) in an existing product. As of today, they can now perform tests to see if what they manufacture either does or can be modified to work with stem cells. Sounds like a shot in our very weak economic arm to me! Not that I expect our GOP Representative to understand this any better than he understood how many jobs will be saved by stimulus spending for the NEA, NIH, and other favorite targets of the tunnel-vision ideologs.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  441. Tony Weil

    Please give me a break. So according to Cantor, the government should only concentrate on things he feels relate to the economy.
    More GOP potshots

    March 9, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  442. Jamie

    Jack,
    Republicans continue to be in denial. I can only guess that most of them make over 250 k, with stupendous jobs, owning great 7 to 9 homes, excellent comprehensive insurances and grandious churches and big lustrous modern guns; so that they can fight the development and use of science to fight terrible diseases that affect many Americans who could receive help from the advantages of stem cell research.
    As far as I am concern, "the- only- standing- distraction" conspiring adversely against the recovery of our economy and the wellness of our country and great people is The Republican Party of NO: the GRAND OLD PARTY aka GOP. Everything is wrong unless a Republican wrote it or did it or uttered it! How funny & distracting is that? LOL!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  443. Leonard Holden

    It's no distraction, as a scientist I am thankful that we at last have a president with the intelligence to understand the contribution of the scientific community. The Republicans have long been obstructionist to scientific progress.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  444. sasha

    And spend all his capital on their mess.
    Maybe we should interview Phil Graham....remember him.
    Maybe he will tell us where Obama needs to go!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  445. Joe

    No this is not a distraction. It is much ado about nothing. Obama is fulfilling a campaign promise by restoring funding for stem cell research. If President Obama endorsed Mom and apple pie the republicans would complain about that.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  446. Charles in Lawrenceville, NJ

    President Obama is no doubt relieved to have an issue with empirical benefits compared to the hopeless disaster of the economy. Both issues are republican leftovers and as to ‘when life begins’, it’s certainly not in a petri dish.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  447. Mark Kramer

    Thanks Jack. Man, this is a riot, What hypocrisy!. Hijacking Jesus,
    Mom and Apple Pie, our politicians (both sides of aisle) have succesfully sheared us allover the past decade. Of course allow stem cell. Simply monitor it., If there is money to be made in it, then our politicians would spin iots of virtue on it in prayer breakfasts. What better way to obscure earmarks, than to sing the unborn embryo psalm, Aren't you sick of this crap? Elmer Gantry, man. Everything you need to know about politicians and clergy, and well . . .us.

    P.S. Cantor is nuts
    Mark .

    March 9, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  448. Ed, Boston

    Distraction?? The republican Party is the distraction. Where are all these so called, " I believe every embryo is a life and should not be destroyed" When thousands of them are destroyed by going to the trash dump or the furnace. Give me a break the republicans need to understand most Americans know the only reason they are against embryonic stem cell research is to please the far right religious group. I say Hail Hail get Religion out of the government.
    I wonder how many of these big mouths would turn down a cure for family members if it where available with embryonic stem cell.. My advice to the republicans keep doing what you are doing and lose more seats in the next elections.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  449. Max

    This is hardly a distraction. When the Republicans held an unscheduled meeting of Congress in a phony-baloney stunt in the Terri Schiavo affair – now THAT was a distraction. When the 'sanctity of life' hypocrites of the GOP realized that their grandstanding had backfired – even with many in their base, they jumped off that wagon faster than rats off of a sinking ship. President Obama is fulfilling a campaign promise, pure and simple. He hasn't been parading around the nation making this relatively minor policy matter the distraction du jour. He is systematically and quickly doing his best to fulfill as many of his pledges to the people as he can. Period.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  450. susan

    jack
    If there is a cure for diabetes, cancer, parkinsonism, the list goes on and on for so many suffering in this country by doing aggressive stem cell research.So many are suffering due to lack of research, and dying for naught until now where there is a ray of hope. .I have watched children and adults die and why, because a few think they are the power of god. well guess what without the help of something out there we can have hope. You go reachers we despertately need you. Thank you Mr. President

    March 9, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  451. April in WV

    Not a distraction at all! The unfortunate distraction in all this has been the thoughtless distraction from science that has occured over the past eight years. Maybe the reason the U.S. is floundering right now is because we have let religion and politics hamper our progress.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  452. Edward Escobar

    By calling this a distraction, Republicans are trying to distract Obama from achieving his goals of bringing real change to our country through a multitude of programs and new policy directions. It is pathetic that the ONLY thing the Republican party can do is point fingers and say that everybody else is doing something wrong, yet they don't offer any new, bold ideas to make our country better, stronger, etc.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  453. j/NJ

    Some Republicans say President Obama’s stem cell reversal is a distraction from the economy. Are they right?

    Not really, however, if there is a distraction it is a very favourable one indeed...stem cell research will open new medical horizons despite years of political and puritanical resistance from the religious right...Obama's executive order is to be commended, hopefully there will be many others expanding and reshaping social policy...

    March 9, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  454. Rod

    Jack, you must get a kick out of quoting this Country most clairvoyant individual. Just in case, you are having a problem figuring it out. Cantor and Gingrich have been the most automatons figurers around. I hope you have better luck the next time you attempt to quote someone for their brilliance.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  455. Latoya - Charlotte, NC

    That makes a lot of sense. Tell Obama to focus on 1 issue for the next four years. Those idiots. The president is supposed to run the country, every facet of the country not just the economy. Here's my assumption since those idiots get to make crack-based claims: The republicans are trying to distract the public from what intelligent people call "science" by calling Obama a baby killer. Idiots!!!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  456. DAVID BELL

    NO I DON'T THINK ITS A DISTRACTION IT'S THE G.O.P ON IT'S AGENDA OF DOING ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING TO MAKE SURE THAT OBAMA FAILS. JUST MORE GAME PLAYING BY A PARTY WHO IS OUT OF TOUCH WITH REALITY!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  457. Dan Leahy

    Jack,
    Only a distraction for Gingrich, Cantor and friends. President Obama did this by executive order because Congress already passed it during the last administration when Bush vetoed it. Also, by using the executive order, Congress doesn't have to take any time away from their mountain of work. It's only a distraction for those who want to make it so.
    Dan in Santa Barbara

    March 9, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  458. D. Wright

    Whether it's a dodge or not doesn't matter, the economy is in the toilet and heading for the sewer and that should be his primary focus. It touches all aspects of american life.
    Obama's approval rating is going down as we speak. How long are the Democrats going to keep blaming the past administration? That was then and this now and kids I'm not seeing much action! In two years will it still be the Republicans fault? The Democrats wanted CHANGE, well you sure got it and I hope you like it! How's the value of your life's savings looking since he got in? And these earmarks? God help us

    March 9, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  459. Mike - Hot Springs

    It is about time something was done about this. We do not need to remain the prisoner of the Evangelicals of this nation. We as a nation need to go forward and this is a very important area.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  460. CJ Virginia

    Republicans ARE the distraction. You'd think after 8 years of failure to grasp the big picture, they could come up with something other than "NO!" Looking through the myopic lense of Cheney's supply side economic policies has blinded them to the ever-widening gap between the "haves" and "have-nots." Eventually, we will get over our impatience and need for instant solutions and realize that we now have a President capable of strategic planning and LISTEN to what he is saying. That is if we can hear anything above the noise of all the whining.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  461. Tom in New Hope, MN

    Congress approved the stem cell research legislation during the term of George W. Bush. Bush vetoed the legislation. President Obama was right to approve the stem cell research by executive order because congress had already voted for it. Mr. Cantor would do best to work with his Republican colleagues to come up with at least one solution to fix the economy beyond just tax cuts that didn't work during the Bush administration. So far Mr. Cantor has been nothing but a distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  462. Frank Marchese

    The Republicans are not right! Embryonic research is an attraction to the economy. Check stem cell research companys in today's stock market – UP isn't it. More importtant than the stock market, however, is the President's understanding of LIFE. To not save life when you have the capability to save it, is the destruction of life. We elected him our leader – let him lead.

    frank Bethlehem PA

    March 9, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  463. Mike Martin

    Jack,

    isn't it interesting that the Republicans are calling the reversal of the federal stem cell research ban a distraction. They;re the masters of wedge issues and distractions. I guess that is why they assume anything done by the Democrats must be a distraction as well.

    It is revealing to see how their small minds work (or don't in this case).

    March 9, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  464. robert levy

    I think that the Republicans were so use to working with a leader that could not walk and chew gum and that Obama is able to multi task and move between our challanges dazzels them. If they would stop the foot dragging and help move thing forward to get us out of this hole.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  465. Jack Dempsey

    Jack, Anything said by whats left of the republican party is a destraction from reality. Jack from Nice Ca.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  466. John Owen, Hudson, NY

    Jack – I'd like to think that God gave us advanced brains so that we could learn how to one day be peaceful, loving creatures. Stem cell research is one way we might guage whether we are getting closer to God's plan. As to whether it is right? God gave us the tools, yes?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  467. Kevin in GA

    Jack, I think this is a distraction the GOP can use because they have NO PLANS that are fresh, new and inclusive. He, at this time has only signed an Executive Order. How much time was he away from concentrating on the Economy. 30 minutes or less?!!! Please!!! We do need to seperate Politics from Science. If we do not, everything will be an issue. I am so sick of these very narrow minded views.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  468. Hawa (Texas)

    Unfortunately the GOP insists on being one-track-minded. As GOP Rep. Patrick McHenry, said that the new Republican strategy right now is to bring down approval numbers for Democrats. They are not concerned about getting this country back on its feet but rather to score political points in order to gain seats. It is again about "themselves" and not the "collective good". Shame, shame indeed.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  469. DKK from MD

    I am encouraged to read the large number of replies supporting Obama's reversal of funding stem cell research. Until recently, I was under the impression that our country was dominated by narrow-minded, politically motivated egoists using their power and influence to improve their own self-interests over the mass population they are in charge of protecting.

    And another thing; Obama is not causing the the stock market to drop. It's dropping because many companies are selling fewer products and are not profitable. That should be a "duh". The market will turn around after the problems we face show signs of improvement and new profit oportunities emerge.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  470. John

    Its only a distraction if you make it so. Obama is opening an industry that was shuttered by the Bush administration. He has actually separated religious beliefs/morals from science. The combining / confusing of the two was one of the Bush administration's worst legacies. More research = more jobs = more $ into the economy. Not all economic actions are fiscal policy related. This is an economic decision not based on monetary policy, but rather geared toward opening up industry for private investment... What's so wrong with that?

    This will not end any lives, as Rep. "Boner" has inferred. The stem cells come from embryos that have already been harvested and are jut chilling "literally" in a freezer somewhere. Plus, they could potentially cure horrible diseases.

    "distraction" is a relative term. Everything is a distraction to one with the attention span of an infant. Likewise nothing is a distraction for those who plan. Personally, Repubicans trumpetting this as a "distraction" is more so than the actual signing of the policy by the president. the talk of distraction is the distraction in this case.

    Way to shoot yourself in the foot, GOP... again.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  471. Beverley, Fredricksburg Va

    Jack,

    You would think the party of old white men would want some medical research done on diseases they are likely to get.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  472. robyncaffrey keyser west virginia

    att jack

    this coment is for who's coments on this question, ) who feels
    to be against the pressident ( re'aasurring all the possible cures, that can help with the stem cells. ( people aughta get rael' " evreybody is not only missing jobs, and loosing there home's ( but you's are ( litterly saying ) with all the money that was put in the technoligy for ( cures + saferways,
    of life now" everybody thinks its cruel to use the stem cells.

    stem cells "' could push the ongoing faster

    and also with live stem cells ( this is why this world is in bad shape. just keep the living and breithing this air alone.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  473. Rich Mulvaney

    Embryonic Stem Cell Research is essentially the destruction of human life for the benefit of others. All of us alive today were at one time embryos.This is the start of human life. To destroy human life and to exploit it for the benefit of another living human being is immoral and is an assault on the right to live. Recently there have been major developments in using non-embryonic stem cells that can lead to the same benefits without having to destroy human life.That should be the focus of our efforts to cure disease. Embryonic stem cell research is not necessary. The forces behind this movement comes from the same people who promote abortion. It is their way of morally legitimizing the idea that an embryo or a fetus is not human and therefore does not deserve legal protection or reverence.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  474. Ann Perry Garland Tx

    The Republicans or all smart mouth want Pres. Obama to fail.We hope he signs the bill as we need all the research we can have to help people we stand behind him all the way.Go President Obama.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  475. John, Fort Collins, CO

    In response to your question are the Republicans "right" about the stem cell reversal being a distraction, the answer is yes–to the extreme far right. I'm sure this issue will provide lots of fodder for Rush Limbaugh, the Repbulican mother ship, to sound off on.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  476. John, Fayetteville, NY

    Take the religion factor out of the equation and what do you have?

    President Bush DID NOT cut any federal monies for Stem Cell Research.....he merely blocked growing any further amounts of embryonic cells.....his right, his belief.

    Now for the facts....that really hurt those who don't do any research to form opinions. Embryonic cells are not that viable, look to the studies in 2007, they grew uncontrollably, grew tumors, and were not considered a viable solution to all the ailments and diseases that everyone wants cured yesterday.

    Now, using Adult Skin cells.....now that's a different story. There has been many strides in that area and it looks viable. Was it blocked by the government? Absolutely not. Funded, Absolutely....fully, just like the Embryonic Cells.....so lets get the real truth out there.

    Now, for all those who back in 2000 and 2004 paraded people in wheelchairs, telling the world, their lives would be saved if this technology was given a chance..........you should be ashamed for instilling false hope and toying with American's emotions, but they did because that's how most of us vote, with emotion, versus intellect. At best, given 100% satisfactory results and zero setbacks, the technology is 25-35 years away from ANY breakthroughs.

    So get the facts, take religion out of it, and make a really true and informed decision on the subject.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  477. arlene in iowa

    jack, at the age of 34 i was hit by a drunk driver and my spinal cord severed except the width of a fingernail. I live with daily pain and have to live off social security. I never thought i would see a cure in my life time.I have great hope now. those of you who say this is a distraction and wrong are the ones who have no idea what it is like to have to live with a disease or disability. This could help countless people.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  478. Bobbie Vazquez

    Actually – I think conservative republicans like Rush, Cantor and Boehner (aka. Larry, Curly and Moe) are the only true distraction from fixing the economy. They and their "Free market" ideological points of view got us into this mess. It amazes me on how so out of touch with a the american people and our issues these guys are... Besides, in these trying times with all these issues, we need a president who can multitask .

    March 9, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  479. Chryssa

    Ever hear of multi-tasking? Sheesh. I know it's weird to have a smart president, but try to keep up.

    Boise, ID

    March 9, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  480. Barbara West

    Jack, It really doesn't matter the Republican will not go along with anythingI that the Demacrate have to say. Jack! .I've just got to say this. It sounds like the Republican are still under their boss Bushhhh. Their words are just the same. What a waste for the republicans.They just can't sem to move ahead.
    Barb.
    Skowhegan Me.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  481. Ima...North Mississippi

    Depends on whether you mean "intentional" distraction or just a regular distraction...you know, like the republicans are!

    Give Obama a break...good grief, he doesn't even know where all the White House bathrooms are yet!!!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  482. Jim, Honolulu

    I'll tell you what's distracting: the GOP's constant obstructionist attacks on the nation's efforts to address these crises. As a Republican, I'm deeply saddened to see the pathetic cries for attention from my party's leaders. Knock it off and get on the problem-solving bandwagon already!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  483. susan

    Jack
    If there is a cure for diabetes, cancer, the list goes on and on for so many suffering in this country. Doing aggressive stem cell research many are suffering due to lack of research, and dying for naught until now where there is a ray of hope. .I have watched children and adults die and why, because a few think they are the power of god. Good for the President, without the help of something out there we can have hope. You go reachers we despertately need you. Thank you JACK .

    March 9, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  484. Jose in Dallas, Tx

    Jack,

    How many Republicans like Rush Limbaugh have a strong enough education to lecture anyone on Stem Cells. This is a National Security Issue. If we do not learn what can be done from Stem Cell research, we could find out in the next war, conflict, or rogue state who decide to experiment on prisoners.

    If it cure's Republicanism, that alone will justify the research. Now if we could only find cures for Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin, Ann Coulter, Sean Hannity, and Bill O'Reilly. If stem cell research cures America of this, it will have paid for itself 10 fold!

    Jose,
    Dallas, Tx

    March 9, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  485. Bill Peresman

    The Republicans call the President's action on stem cells a distraction from the economy. Of course they do. They don't want to remember when their guy, McCain, faked calling off his campaign because of the economic crisis. Sen. Obama said he was able to concentrate on more than one thing at a time. And he certainly proves that. The Republicans are the ones distracted by the stem cell action. The vast majority of Americans favor the President's action. Talk to Republican Nancy Reagan about that. The Republican position against the stem cell action NEVER addresses the protection of embryos that are destroyed daily and not for stem cell research. If the Republicans were really sincere in their opposition to stem cell research that destroys embryos, they would offer a safe haven for those embryos. They do not! They really don't care about the embryos, they care about their narrow religious extremist base.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  486. Karen from FL

    I wish people would lay off President Obama; he's dancing as fast as he can.

    Fmr. Pres. Bush had three vacations at the Ranch in Crawford during this same time of his first Presidency.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  487. Jim

    Jack,

    What a ridiculous complaint! I think the conservatives have been distracted ever since the election.

    Jim
    Reno, Nevada

    March 9, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  488. Ever - New York

    Are "Some" Republicnas suggesting that we, as Americans, Are Easily distracted? If not ...Who then do they suggest is being "Distracted?"

    The present state of the economy is difficult to ignore... AND Stem Cell research is NOT a "Bug Light." The only Disatrction here is: THEIR saying it is a distraction.

    So WHO then is REALLY doing the distracting?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  489. Melanie

    We just aren't used to having a President who can multi-task, or one who actually shows up for work on a regular basis, for that matter.

    Obama cannot please Republicans, regardless of what he does. I applaud him for systematically going down his list of campaign promises. If we had CEOs with Obama's work ethic and efficient management style, we wouldn't be in this mess.

    Melanie
    Los Angeles

    March 9, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  490. RJDearman

    What more can you expect from the party so desperate they hijacked religion and singled out the phrase "innocent life" to con the ignorant to vote them into power. Churches were divided, sin was redefined and precious little children who who were so unfortunate as to have been born still went hungry. The Great Communicator was also the Greatest Deregulator, and his principal message was the negative notion that government is evil. Some people will never get over the need for a daily dose of reality, and Jack can mix it for them! Have at, Jack!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  491. Phill

    I believe the notion that this is a "distraction" or some kind of ploy to take focus off of the economy is completely ridiculous. The economy has been priority #1 since the president was elected, and he's been working non-stop on the problem. What has the Republican party done, aside from in-fight amongst itself, step up critical rhetoric of Democrats and apologize to pompous radio hosts?

    I'm an independent voter, a 26 year old white male born and raised in a rural community. I grew up with conservative values, and understand conservative ideals, but I can neither understand nor support the direction that the GOP is moving in. Being conservative is just what it says – it means to conserve – be careful, don't go overboard. It doesn't mean to constantly fight with the other party or throw hissy-fits when you don't get your way. Even so, now isn't the time to *be* socially conservative – we need to be socially bold, decisive, and work quickly as a people to pull ourselves out of this rut.

    The GOP needs to stop considering whats best for itself or its base or its figureheads in the media, and start considering whats best for the American people if it ever again wants to be relevant again.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  492. Stephen

    Are they ever right? Republicans seem to be incapable of understanding the bigger picture. Stem Cell research will create job, save lives, and help American medical research once agian be a leader in the world. Sacrificing the unborn. Once agian the republicans are playing to their ignorant base. When will they realize people are no longer buying their lies. Hopefully never, I wince at the thought of brainless, selfish, bigots running the government agian. Obama is cleaning up their mess. Why don't the republicans try something new. Actually doing something positive for America, not just themselves.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  493. Laura

    IMHO, Embyronic Stemcell Research isn't a distraction from the economy. It's just another human interest story that will fall on the wayside as is any other science/medicine story until the economy becomes less of an issue.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  494. Lori (a dissatisfied republican in Ohio)

    No, it's not a distraction. Obama is the first president in my memory that has adressed and attempted to keep his campaign promises to the public. Republicans seem to think that promises to the public should be ignored and only looked at just before re-election time to see if it wil help them get re-elected. If they're not up for re-election, the promises will never see daylight. But I'm sure the Republicans keep all their promises to the Lobbyists immediately.

    On a side note- Tell Lou that I'm a registered Republican and my husband is registered Democrat. We did that 30yrs ago so we could vote in both primaries in Ohio. If we register Independant we can't vote in the primaries. We thought this was important, but I'm so embarrassed to say I'm a Republican that I plan to register Independant at the next election. (In Ohio you can only change parties when you vote.)

    March 9, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  495. susan

    Jack
    If there is a cure for diabetes, cancer, the list goes on and on for so many suffering in this country. Doing aggressive stem cell research many are suffering due to lack of research, and dying for naught until now where there is a ray of hope. .I have watched children and adults die and why, because a few think they are the power of god. Good for the President, We can now have hope again.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  496. Chad from Los Angeles, CA

    I appreciate any disctractions from the economy, because Alcohol does not always do the trick to get my mind off financial problems. Thanks Mr. President.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  497. cindy vanwert

    The Republicans are such idiots! How do they not see that stem cell research whether it is embryonic or adult stem cells, can truly make some progress in finding cures for so many debilitating diseases and further reduce health care cost . It's all inter-related and if Repugs weren't in cohootz with the insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies and big business then perhaps they'd be willing to let scientist do their jobs to find cures with stem cell research!
    Hell no, it's not a distraction, we finally have a President that is a humanitarian and is not about the almighty dollar, America is not accustomed to having our President truly care about all the people.
    Hoorah for Obama!
    Sick, fat, obese, diseased Americans make the insurance/pharmaceutical companies RICHER-hence Republican have their dirty hands in the profits of these related industries.
    Any kind of cure or progress will only reduce health care cost-so get over the moral issues and let's move forward and not denounce every single thing that our President is trying to do for us all.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  498. mark ( Houston)

    No Jack, they are not right but hypocrites. They should go on the record now and say should there be a breakthrough in stem cell research, they will not seek treatment.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:37 pm |
  499. Mike - Nashville TN

    The Republicans are wrong and the reasons they are wrong are the reasons that I have turned from a Republican voter to an anti-Republican voter. In politics, one hopes that their party will have some issues of value, and the Republicans are failing that. They are ranting for the sake of ranting, not for the sake of their constituents. Please note that a vote against Republicans is not necessarily a vote for Democrats. It is a close call which party has become more obscene and whiny. The fact that a republican AUTOMATICALLY rejects a Democrat thought and vice-versa suggests that there is something terribly wrong with the folks who claim to be looking out for the country.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:37 pm |
  500. Leslie Crabtree from Ashland, OR

    Sometime between when an egg is fertilized and a baby is born, it becomes a person, but an embryo is not a human being.

    Would you call an egg a chicken?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:39 pm |
  501. Joe Laskosky

    The GOP seems to be a distraction on any form of government. They agree to disagree to create their own NEW identity. They are the collective party of "NO." They keep singing "NO" to the pork and taking a heafty portion of it for themselves. The party of "hipocracy." It's like listening to a two headed goat!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:39 pm |
  502. Terry from Illinois

    Jack,
    Republicans have not been right on issues for the last 8 years.
    Fact, they lost the election and the direction the country is going away from them.
    Now they are just going to be the distraction for the next 4 years...oh yea, with Rush Limbaugh and only 25% of the country agreeing with them.
    Good Luck next election...

    March 9, 2009 at 5:40 pm |
  503. Bruce

    it is indeed a distraction. We have real problems the media is ignoring: The NAIS legislation is being passed this week, with 4 other similar pieces which will destroy smaller farms and personal efforts to grow food. The Monsantos of the world are behind it – has nothing to do with food safety. We also have the introduction of the Food Safety Modernization Act of 2009 that lets "inspectors" go all over your property if you have a rabbit, goat or a small garden. If you resist you WILL be arrested. What happened to warrants?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:40 pm |
  504. Peter Fern Park, Fl.

    It certainly is a distraction for certain elements of the republican party. You know, the ones that believe global warming is a hoax or that the earth and all that's on it were created a few millenia ago. They are willing to allow millions to die unnecessarily rather then accept the role of science in the modern world..

    March 9, 2009 at 5:40 pm |
  505. Barbara

    Embryonic stem research is another PLUS for the Obama administration. This action will allow the U.S. to recapture it's place in medical research and technology, and with it, lead the economic recovery in the field of medicine.

    If anything, the Republican platform offer nothing new ... regulations and the restriction of invention.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:41 pm |
  506. Chuck Wright Georgia

    Just because the Republicans can't walk and chew gum at the same time doesn't mean President Obama can't or shouldn't. Republicans always want to slow down anything that competes with their ability to skim from funds they distribute.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:41 pm |
  507. Tim, Clemmons NC

    Jack, you have to stop using Republican talking points for your questions. To answer your question...Absoultely not!!!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:42 pm |
  508. Shelly

    So because the President reverses Bush's war on science everyone will forget about the global recession? If I'm not mistaken, the President has reversed many of the former Administrations archaic policies over the past 5 weeks. Have any of these announcements distracted us from what's going on in the world? They have nothing constructive to say, so they issue baseless accusations. So sad for the gop.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:43 pm |
  509. Bonnie in Arkansas

    Was it an ideological sideshow when Bush made such a big deal out of it?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:45 pm |
  510. Gerald West

    You're silly even to bring up the matter! The President can handle more than one thing at a time. Reversing the foolish Bush decrees should be done as soon as possible, just in case our nation succeeds in recovering from the economic collapse due to 8 years of Republican misrule.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:45 pm |
  511. Steve, Boston

    This is the correct decision- without a doubt. Unless you are one of those who believe the earth is flat.... The anti-science nuts have had hold of this country for too long. The same people who are yelling distraction are also yelling that he is too negative about the economy- just blatantly political nonsense.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:45 pm |
  512. Gary

    Approving stem cell research is a distraction only in that it misses the point that we can't even afford to do the medical research that we are already doing. We have borrowed and borrowed and borrowed sometimes spending it on worthwhile things like medical research and sometimes wasting it on welfare but in either case we have to get to a point to say enough is enough we just don't have the money to do everything that we want to. We have to look for things to cut including medical research and balance the budget. If we get to a balanced budget and then have a little extra money we can talk about this interesting area of reasearch. In the mean time I am fed up with both the Republicans and Democrats crippling our nations economy with excessive borrowing.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:46 pm |
  513. Will from San Jose

    Isn't removing arbitrary restrictions on business something Republicans claim they want? This reversal opens up the scientific community for more research jobs that otherwise would go overseas.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:46 pm |
  514. Alex F.

    As a typical populist he is doing popular things. Sometimes those things may be right but sometimes wrong. Moreless, randomly. The same statement can be applied to any populist in the world history

    March 9, 2009 at 5:47 pm |
  515. Carlton

    It seems the Republican Party has become a distraction from the pulse of American soceity. Far right enough to be off the map and into a fog that they'll need to see their way out of.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:48 pm |
  516. Wendell Gunn

    The president's decision does not separate science from politics. By providing government funding for embryonic stem cell research brings politics and science together. The research is not against the law and is being carried out already in the private sector. People who support this research are free to do so by contribution their money. Forcing others to support it through their tax dollars is definitely political. By the way, I personally support embryonic stem cell research, but oppose federal funding for it.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:48 pm |
  517. Conor in Chicago

    A distraction? Right, like say, the invasion of Iraq?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:48 pm |
  518. Jonathan Coolidge

    Oh, right; stem... cell research a distraction. What about all those years we spent going after Saddam Hussein and the alleged weapons of mass destruction? Oh, my mistake; that was a mandate.

    As for those who consider biogenetic research unethical, please realize that it is not a universal consensus that stem cell harvesting or for that matter human cloning or genetic engineering is evil. Ask anyone with any imagination. Suppose some day, these technologies render all our current diseases or even old age obsolete? Suppose my job as a physician some day is less about fixing problems and more about letting someone be a centaur or a mermaid for the week? After seeing person after person suffering from chronic pain or dying in their forties of a heart attack, the "nightmarish dystopia" of a genetically engineered transhumanist society is starting to look like paradise.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:49 pm |
  519. margaret

    Why worried about keeping big banks alive when we are not worried about keeping human embryos alive? They will be used for stem cell research,along with taxpayers' dollars. How can any one in good conscience try to prolong/improve the life of some people at the expense of our most vulnerable future Americans? The end certainly does not justify the means.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:49 pm |
  520. MH

    The timing is carefully crafted in an attempt to distract the media from reporting on all those vacancies still unfilled at the Treasury Department.
    Can we please get the Treasury Secretary some help over there so we can get this economy fixed? It amazes me we're this far past the inaguration and we still have major vacancies in key positions.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:49 pm |
  521. Carol S.

    Jack, me thinks the Republicans speak with fork-ed tongue! Here in Arizona where the Republicans have a majority in the House and Senate, the departure of Janet Napolitano paved the way for Repulican Jan Brewer to control the governorship. So what does this very Republican state government choose to focus on during the first two months??? These, uh, "distractions"!

    HB2400 State Ban on Partial Birth Abortion (Out of committee 1/24)
    HB2564 Abortion Consent Act (Out of committee 2/25)
    HB2357 Students Religious Liberties Act (ditto – 2/23)
    SB1206 Divorce Reform (awaiting committee review)

    So, is it a distraction when it doesn't play well with conservatives and a great piece of legislation when it "energizes" the base?? Senators McCain and Kyle should stay out of this bit of nonsense over stem cell research. Obama did the right thing.

    Carol from Scottsdale, AZ

    March 9, 2009 at 5:50 pm |
  522. David in Atlanta

    The Executive Order has been signed. It's done. End of discussion. Conversation over. Republicans are the ones now using the issue as a distraction because there's no reason the rest of us can't now turn our attention back to the economy and let the scientists do their work. It's the Republicans who won't let us refocus on the economy now.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:50 pm |
  523. David Hannes

    Stem Cell research a distraction? Really? Cause I saw this as hope for a chance for a cure to my father's Parkinsons. This was the most important caompaign promise fullfilled to me and my family. Anyone who sees this otherwise obviously live with the luxary of being healthy.

    Thank you, President Obama. Thank you from my entire family.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:50 pm |
  524. community Advocate

    The stem cell ban was a misguided act by the Bush Administration.
    I love Bush for the Faith Based Initiative; but so many other acts of his and his cronies were beyond comprehension. I blame the Republicans for all the problems we have now. The kicked against everything good just for the sake of being on the opposite side.

    I tell you a story. A republican who kicked against giving the Foreign trained physicians a break turned around and hire the vunerable IMGs-International Medical Graduates as his program Medical Assistants. He used their medical knowledge but paid them peanuts.

    Our health care overhaul should include stopping the protectionist attitudes of the overseer of IMGs.

    As an IMG i refused to be discriminated against. The American people need to understand what is going on. There are so many no conscience IMG overseers who are self serving and bigots.

    Community Activitist.
    New Orleans.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:50 pm |
  525. Paul Nong

    Thats the problem with a two party system. who's ever party hold the white house, the other party always disagree. the Bush administration stop stem-cell cell research dead in the water for 8years. His reason's, God would only knows.. there could have been a cured for diseases that we would never even heard off.. As of the GOP claimed of distraction from the real issue "the economy", that, Bipartisan.

    It wasn't until the last month of the Bush administration, that they finally admit that the country is in an economic recession. good timing!
    I don't believed that the president can solved every problems, but he is starting it on the right track, he is spending $money$ domestically. I cann't say that much about the previous administration. GOP agenda's
    "Polish Image", that how much they got in common with ordinary Americans..

    paul Nong
    Boston MA

    March 9, 2009 at 5:50 pm |
  526. zak

    Jack

    What you expect from Republicans ? to agree or to discuss or at least to search before they say NO........always for them AMERICA is their way or who cares......

    Zak

    March 9, 2009 at 5:50 pm |
  527. Trevman

    Jack, It's not a distraction but a fulfillment of a promise made during the election campaign. It's finally dawning on the GOP that you can have a Democrat as president who will actually keep his word. Instead of being the party of 'No' and negative criticism, the GOP should worry about crafting a message that can appeal to more than just Rush Limbaugh and his ilk.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:50 pm |
  528. Rama Modali

    It is about time that we have reversed this policy that has hurt our research and development in finding cures to several diseases. It is very unfortunate that our political leaders put their religious beliefs and votes ahead of what is important for human race in general.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:51 pm |
  529. Bill M

    Implying that President Obama's restoration of scientific principles is a distraction = Jack Cafferty complaining about something in order to have something to say during those lulls between commercials on CNN. There are a lot of things to undo from the last 8 dark years that require some multitasking.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:51 pm |
  530. Joseph

    There are NO cures from embyonic stem cell research and it was never illegal, they just didn't use our tax money. The reason they need tax dollars is because all the progress is being made with adult stem cells, something that all groups support and all the private dollars are going there.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:52 pm |
  531. Bob

    Only a right pundit would be asking this stupid question.

    Bushie politicizing of science killed people and delayed treatment for thousands of ill people.

    Why is it that you continue right wing propaganda?

    What is wrong with just the true?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:52 pm |
  532. Eric Stoddard

    Absolutely NOT. We did not vote for him to sit on his a$$. He is getting things done finally. Thank goodness WE have intelligence in Office again. It's amazing to me how the Republicans have had 8 years. All they have is a war to show for it, an economy that is in shambles and the religious rights running amuck. Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity.. YOUR Neo-Con ideaology is no longer in the mainstreem. GET LOST!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:53 pm |
  533. Edward T

    I like this move because
    1) it may saves lives,
    who knows if anyone I love or my self will be benefited from this move. Benefits out-weight the loss (under the guidelines). I don't think it is a moral debate afterall.

    2) it may help our place in the medical "world", I mean the whole world.
    Other countries already advanced their researches, such as China. There are Americans going to other countries for genetic treatments also. We are missing a lot of steps on this race.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:55 pm |
  534. GAIL MANFRE SLIDELL, LOUISIANA

    Awfully nice to know that some members of the Republican Party consider President Obama's lifting of the ban on embyronic stem cell research a"distraction.

    Am I off base to assume that those folks who have incurable cancer, severe heart disease, ALS , MS and Parkinson's are "distractions?"

    The irony is now doctors attempting to find cures for these devastating malady do not need embryonic stem cells.

    BTW, Jack I have had Parkinson's for 13 years & you 'd better believe that PD has been quite a bit more than a distraction!

    Gail Manfre

    March 9, 2009 at 5:55 pm |
  535. William Courtland

    So Parkinson's is Ovarian spongiform encethalothopy: it is cured with the ceasing of eating undercooked meats.

    Diabeties is often cause by the cultural adjustment required to adapt to new types of sugar: as cane sugar... but in truth diabeties is cause by pork fat: to cure diabeties it requires the infusion of specific acids into the liver and Kidney's to repair and replace what the pancreas requires to create insulin.

    Cancer can not be treated by stem cells: they would only be able to replace the damaged tissues.

    Spinal Cord injuries: hydro therapy via the stimulation of hair within a calm watered environment, the head fully submerged and the person remaining without breath until they can feel the water moving their bodies hair: wait in the bath until you feel that hair: it may take many treatments: will also assist in healing Cerebral Palsy: as relating to the cerabelum Parabelum connection being washed with a fluid: often the birth caul is not fully formed in a Pre-mature baby: so fluid is still in the lungs and gets pushed back into that open connection waiting for a mothers milk enzymes... the upside down baptism which Achilles survived by the blow-back response: made him better than all the males of the land: and then Nike won the foot race... Of course females are never baptised upside down, but children often get bathed badly today: and if an infant gets water boarded via the tap or the bathwater itself: if can result in mild cases of Cerbral Palsy: and is why a great many patients would not want their heads put into the water...

    So Stem Cells: probably will improve eye sight in those who have retnal damage: but then: if your body does not produce it: why want it in your veins?

    The Economy is only solved with a New United States Postal Service: and is something the Presidency was given executive power over: via that document all you American's seem to ignore...

    March 9, 2009 at 5:57 pm |
  536. Rock

    Further proof Republicans can only handle one thing at a time and feel like everyone else should follow suit. Welcome to the world of multitasking boys and girls. Get with the program or get out of the way!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:57 pm |
  537. Vicente Houston,Tx

    Distraction? Well yes of course, it is meant for you to keep your eyes focused on something over there, like a good magician.
    Now to line up the cattle for market.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:58 pm |
  538. Harold, Phoenix,AZ.

    Jack,
    Research is necessary for progress. Politics should not be a factor,our future and that of the world depends on knowledge. Long after the parties are forgotten the need for scientific know how will be needed.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:58 pm |
  539. kit

    Jack, I'm fed up with all those folks out there that say "If you were in my shoes, you'd want stem cell research too." I'm tired of their pity parties. Crawl out of your sacks. I too have lived with chronic pain for over a decade. I have a c-3 spinal injury and oppose embryonic stem cell with all my heart. NO child should have to die for me or anyone else. No child should have to die period. It's sad enough women don't think before they get pregnant. There are other cells we can use. Man up out there.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:59 pm |
  540. Peggy in Austin

    OMG !!!! A President that can multi -task –How refreshing !!

    March 9, 2009 at 5:59 pm |
  541. Fred Day

    How can a sane, rational, scientific approach to policy be a distraction from anything... except, maybe, from superstition and mumbo jumbo of every stripe?

    March 9, 2009 at 5:59 pm |
  542. David

    I do not understand why the President has to take action on this issue now - I think he is trying to distract people and get everyone fired up and discussing a deep moral point at the wrong time - It is sad that so many people are in favor of this - What will everyone do and where will they run when God finally passes judgment on America . As it says in the Bible
    MENE, MENE, TEKEL

    March 9, 2009 at 5:59 pm |
  543. Mary

    I can't believe you. This is a serious religious belief for a lot of the world's population, and you're sitting there using it to bash Republicans. Everything is not the big bad Republicans trying to sabatoge Obama. This is serious theological struggle for many people of faith and you've completely minimized it and turned it political. The only messages you've read on air totally ignore that and create political drama.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:59 pm |
  544. Jean M

    I am a public health nurse and I am very happy that President Obama signed to increase federal funding for embryonic cell stem research. It offers a lot of hope for people with chronic diseases such as diabetes, parkinsons and alzheimers to name a few. I applaud President Obama for doing what is good for the AMerican people and not letting politics get in the way. He is moving ahead on what he promised and that is what the majority of the American people want and that is why they voted for him.

    March 9, 2009 at 5:59 pm |
  545. Michelle from Mariposa, CA

    Are you kidding me? A distraction? It must have taken him at least 20 minutes to sign yet has such far reaching impact. It means we will be creating real jobs for educated people. It means we may have cures in the future for some of these terrible diseases and conditions.

    I'm sure that these same Republican whiners will be standing in line for treatments that are developed as a result of this executive order when THEY need them. Will they be complaining then?

    March 9, 2009 at 6:00 pm |
  546. James Orens

    Once was the day when people and pundits questioned whether or not a candidate who could not multitask could be President of the U.S. Indeed, did we not have this discussion when John McCain suspended his campaign?

    I wonder, is President Obama supposed to ignore everything else going on in our world to focus solely on the economy? Even if a quick an easy solution was available, even if we could wake up tomorrow and find out that the economy was robust once more, me thinks that the Republicans doth protest too much. Indeed, they have become the main distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:00 pm |
  547. Scott in Canada

    This is the President who wanted to work on Education, Environment and Health Care in the middle of a recession. Is it a distraction, to some degree. Obama's record, however, says that this isn't ideological

    March 9, 2009 at 6:00 pm |
  548. Colleen

    As a woman in a family with 4 type-1 diabetics, I'd say this is a long-overdue distraction! Ask anyone with a spinal cord injury if this is a distraction...

    March 9, 2009 at 6:02 pm |
  549. Colleen

    Distraction? I hope so! Someone and something needs to take everyones focus on the economy. All this focus is causing undo panic which is driving the market as well as consumer confidence. Distract away I say!

    March 9, 2009 at 6:02 pm |
  550. Carl E Moore

    I guess the president takes the view "You can't make an omelet without breaking a few eggs."

    March 9, 2009 at 6:03 pm |
  551. Mike, FL

    Just wait everyone this is distractiing for all the wrong reasons, Bush signed a bill against government FUNDING for stem cells, not against stem cells all together. Bush didnt care what the private sector did with the stem cell research, he wasnt going to fund it with our dollar.....not a bad idea right? O but wait Obamas gonnna throw more money around that we dont got...

    March 9, 2009 at 6:03 pm |
  552. Toni from OK

    No, this is not a distraction from the economy. It is eight years overdue. This President can multitask – thank God.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:03 pm |
  553. Ray Hoskins

    Just because the economy is job one, doesn't mean it is the only job. Obama promised this, and a number of other things during the campaign and he is keeping his promises. It isn't a new priority. To frame it as a "distraction" from his attempts to fix the economic mess is insulting to the American populace.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:04 pm |
  554. Wilson

    This is a campaign promise he is keeping and has nothing to do with distracting us. If anything, it was a huge boost to stem cell companies. They were up 10 to 20% today.

    If anything this will help the economy. Thank goodness the dark days of wingnut republicans in the White House if over for at least 4 years.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:04 pm |
  555. Christie

    Just because the economy is in a slump does not mean that we just ignore everything else. Should we ignore the Iraq War because our economy is in a slump? Should we ignore global warming because our economy is in a slump? I don't think so . . .

    March 9, 2009 at 6:05 pm |
  556. Cindy Merrill

    The rest of the world has gone ahead with genetic research- we're decades behnd already. In this economy, not to mention the ugly threats we're getting from North Korea, China's military games,Iran- it seems unethical to even consider pregnancy! So, Stem cell research? Well, ok.
    President Obama has got to be careful, however- the latest cause of the week is wearing thin. Right now, most of us (including myself) are facing empty refrigerators- and can't find work. Focus, Obama! FOCUS.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:06 pm |
  557. Hal

    Who is going to pay for all of this? Is this another thing we are eventually going to have to pay for down the road?

    March 9, 2009 at 6:06 pm |
  558. K in New Haven

    I am so encouraged by the overwhelming positive response by readers who wholeheartedly are giving our new president a thumbs up on this important scientific research. And he is so smart that at the same time he has clearly defined the need to separate politics from scientific research. Our president has such a clear and present grip on the most important issues of our time, clearly he doesn't need to slow down to congressional pace and risk accomplishing nothing. The conservative right is worried they won't have the time or the resources to mount their attack on so many fronts at once.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:06 pm |
  559. Kiki

    Not only is it a distraction from the tanking economy since he took office, but it is also immoral and unethical. I do not want my tax dollars going for a research that will destroy human life just to try to cure another. Will these people who get these cells from a human embryo really feel good about it? What's next? God, please forgive us.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:06 pm |
  560. Darry in Colorado

    I am shocked by the hatred in these responses. Amazing.

    I have an uncurable disease but, believe it or not, if someone else has to die to save me, I want not part of it. Would one of these responders give up their life to save someone else? That, of course, would be great love.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:07 pm |
  561. Henry

    What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul? Jesus Christ

    March 9, 2009 at 6:08 pm |
  562. Bill, Sioux City, IA

    Maybe I missed something, but this only involves federal funding. Private funding of this research was never prohibited. If there was so much promise in this research, wouldn't the private sector make the investment to reap the rewards. Is this really a battle for funding or a battle of ideologies?

    March 9, 2009 at 6:08 pm |
  563. Patrick

    Jack, I am a Moderate Republican that does not believe this is a distraction. This is just another ploy by the far right to attempt to make Democrats look bad and try to push their agenda. This is just one act that Obama passed and the far right are making themselves look foolish by focusing on petty things like this and not the left passing pork filled bills contrary that are not fiscally responsible.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:08 pm |
  564. Jeff Crocket

    This is all childish political hopscotch!!

    Bush never stopped any part of stem cell research. In fact he gave even more federal dollars for non embryonic stem cell research.

    He stopped giving federal grants for embryonic. Grants from tax dollars.

    The myth about this whole subject is despicable!!!

    March 9, 2009 at 6:08 pm |
  565. Don

    Yea, the president shouldn't ever deal with anything else other than the "economy." Anything else would be a distraction. Or maybe he can lift the ban and that'll be the end of it and it was never a distraction in the first place.

    I guess there's no wildfires on the news to talk about.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:08 pm |
  566. Shoobop

    Jack...do you honestly believe that the only job that our President has right now is to "fix" the economy? While it is probably top priority, it's obvious that there are things that are coming in to a close second, such as bringing our troops home, health care...and yes, even stem cell research. All of which are indirectly related. And while I'm at it...I'll let you in on a little secret...it hasn't even been TWO MONTHS YET! The man has made remarkable strides and has shown that he is getting down to business. Do not insult our intelligence by trying to downplay President Obama's actions. The man has proven himself as someone who is kicking butt and taking names. YOU GO OBAMA!

    March 9, 2009 at 6:08 pm |
  567. Don

    I don't think it is a distraction from the economy, but it is more of a distraction from BHO discarding all of his campaign promises.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:09 pm |
  568. Simpliticus

    Republicans can claim all they wish and this includes the moon as well. George W. Bush simply trashed this country and President Obama has to clean up after him which the Republicans would wish you forgot, kind of like distracting the public from the real agenda. Stem cell research is important and not a distraction, sorry, republicans this won't hunt. Bush used this agenda to keep his religious brethren, in whom he actually detested, for political reasons only. No distraction, simply overly needed!

    March 9, 2009 at 6:09 pm |
  569. Chuck H.

    Gee Jack - Nice balance. Regardless of one's view on this subject, I'm "shocked" that there is no Republican-based point of views mentioned on air. "Gambling at Ricks Cafe....?" I mean, no secret your leanings, but, Man, you're giving the folks on MSNBC a run for their money.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:09 pm |
  570. Mary

    "Sound science shouldn't be affected by ideology?"

    This is not SOUND science. This is taking life and playing Dr Frankenstein. And EVERYTHING we do is affected by our religious/spiritual beliefs (minimized as 'ideology' by Obama).

    Obama LOVES to make everything about "political bickering", that way he doesn't have to admit that anyone else has a valid point of view.

    This is a perfect example of our technology progressing faster than our spiritual development.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:09 pm |
  571. Jeannie

    NOTHING will stop me from remembering that our country is on the brink of social and economic disaster! The signing of this is just another bone-headed decision that O has made in his first few months in office.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:10 pm |
  572. Tanya, Manhattan Beach

    Jack....Obama's position on stem cell research is only as distracting from the economy, as you want it to be. Next......

    March 9, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  573. MDM

    The posters here have obviously not read the article or kept up with past events.... Bush did not outlaw embryonic stem cell research, just denied government financing for it. With all the money being thrown around the last few months it's good to see that there is obviously more where that came from....

    March 9, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  574. B in Pittsburgh

    It is the job of the President of the United States to deal with many issues at one time. This is not a distraction. He is simply handling one of many issues. Is it the "most important" issue? Probably not to many Americans. But to others, especially those with loved ones who can benefit from this research, it is a priority. I applaud our President's ability to handle many issues at once. The GOP is focusing on this so much because they are actually trying to steer the attention away from the fact that they have failed to come up with any plan themselves to help address the economic issues facing our nation today.

    They would much rather spend their time voting "no" on everything that comes before them and trying to find something to bash the President for. They should be ashamed of themselves, continuing to play politics in such a horrific time as this. Children, the lot of em. Granted, I'm not happy with some of the congressional dems either and the way they are behaving.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  575. Chaim Gogol

    We are in our current situation because of eight solid years of obstructionism, fundamentalism, obfuscation, hypocrisy and greed. Anything the Republicans say is an attempt to distract us from that reality. Anything we do to reverse the current state of affiairs is well done.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  576. Kip

    Jack,

    Will you ever ask a non-leading question? Every question you ever ask always has a negative tilt towards Repubs.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  577. Miguelito

    Why is this move considered "separating science from politics" according to the CNN headline? Using federal funding to support a morally controversial research agenda is somehow separating science from politics while not forcing taxpayers to support a morally controversial research agenda is somehow mixing politics and science?

    This simply a shift from the right to the left. It has nothing to do with disentangling politics from science. True disentanglement = no federal funding period.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  578. Keith McKay

    The entire country is distracted by all the bewildering thoughts of which will reach bottom first, the faltering economy, or the faltering Grand Old Party? The party of old and outdated ideals is not so grand.
    Being a longtime Democrat, I would have never thought I would say the following: Pat Buchanon is the current leader of the GOP. He’s the only one in the group with half a brain. Rush Limbaugh is trying his best to be a distraction but only comes off as having been sired by the late Wisconsin Senator, Joseph McCarthy.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  579. John Smith

    Evidently, the Republicans can't walk and chew gum at the same time. I'm not surprised. After many years of being"in charge" they left a true disaster behind. They are totally useless.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  580. coninpa

    Jack,
    Obama has done more for the PEOPLE, than Bush and his republican Seante did in 8 long bleak years!! And Obama is KEEPING HIS CAMPAIGN PROMISES. Well...Republicans will have none of it! Who makes campaign promises...and THEN KEEPS THEM?? Unheard of....
    Stem cell research was one promise, and two months in...President Obama kept it! And not a lobbyists in sight!!
    Good god...the Republicans must be choking on the ir own OUTRAGEOUS EARMARKS!

    March 9, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  581. Mark

    Cantor is a joke. Our Republican congressman are way out of touch with reality.

    Newt? Why do we even care what he thinks.

    Obama is doing a great job.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  582. David

    I'm sorry, did I miss the part where we changed the President's job to only work on "Job Number 1" at the exclusion of EVERYTHING else? Is the man supposed to dedicate 100% of his time, his efforts to the economy? Is there anything more that the man himself can do right now? It would seem that maybe he's done what he can and we need to wait and see if it works... So why shouldn't he be doing other things?

    And you know, if it is a distraction is that such a bad thing? Maybe the country NEEDS a distraction right now. We keep focusing not on the economy but on how BAD the economy is and it just keeps getting worse. Like a scab that we keep picking at. Maybe a distraction is JUST want we need... give it some time to heal.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  583. Myke Holford

    No distraction...this policy reversal is in keeping with President Obama's campaign promises and focuses on research and development that will fuel our economic future while reducing health care costs associated with debilitating and life threatening diseases. The government should avoid legislating morality. Dictating
    "morality" edicts falls within the religious/spiritual domain.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  584. Roy

    No Jack it's the right thing to do despite the grumling of those who choose not to choose. This is important research and there are many other components that go with stem cells long before it's called life.

    Roy
    Olympia, Wa

    March 9, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  585. Jeremy, Chicago, IL

    Distraction? How is this a distraction?

    While campaigning, Obama was criticized for youth and inexperience, and portrayed as unable to handle all of the various challenges that may come across the President's desk on any given day. Handling a wide range of issues that vary in priority and public opinion is what he is elected to do; accusing him of trying to distract us from any one "real" issue at hand by spending time to focus on another is outrageous! It is as much his duty to address the economy and the war as it is to address science and religion, race relations and violence, communications and technology, foreign relations and any other issue that we citizens, or our representatives in Congress, ask him to address. Stem cell research is just one of these issues, and it is sad to me that a year ago, Obama was faulted for possibly not being able to handle the daily life of a president...and now that he is, he is faulted for handling too much. Americans aren't stupid, and Obama knows this. They asked for a change, and he is delivering....each and every day, just as he pledged he would.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  586. Jeri

    the Republicans are claiming this to be a distraction because they want to distract the public from recognizing that the Republicans have no ideas. Only complaints. When my 10 y/o daughter behaves like this I tell her not to say anything until she can say something positive.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  587. Pat Ferrin

    Dear Jack,
    It is extremely sad when the people of this vast nation have a great opportunity to again lead by example and show the world that irrespective of different beliefs and ideolgies politically,fiscally or otherwise that we can at least agree to work together for the coomon good of all concerned.Stem Cell Research is, of course needed throughout the entire world.Many of the physically and mentally challenged people are brilliant and capable of doing so much more; they need that chance that this research offers. Trust me ; I know : my seventeen year old was rendered a paraplegic and died at the age of twenty from complications related to spinal cord injuries. He was hopeful too, that one day stem cell research would have helped him,
    but he gave up, much too soon.Can we stop the word 'CAN'T' for a change?

    March 9, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  588. ginny

    Restoring scientific integrity to the decision making process of government seems a 21st century kind of thing to do Jack, it certainly beats the Year 1 approach of the previous inhabitant of the White House.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:24 pm |
  589. Yee

    Its only a distraction to those who believe its a distraction. Once the president signed the stimulus bill, it is going to take time for the stimulus effect to work its work through the economy, to increase the velocity of money, and to unfreeze lending. To me, its a good policy. Stem cell research will help the U.S. economy by investing in the future and in high tech area. The ban has already put U.S. behind in this field as Canadian researchers have discovered ways to regress skin cells into stem cells, providing great potential to by-pass the controversial practice of harvesting embryonic cells and hence taking away another reason to object stem cell research.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:24 pm |
  590. Gary T

    I just have two words in response: Terry Schiavo.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:24 pm |
  591. Josh Connecticut

    Jack,

    Distraction is years of fighting the Iraq War when we were supposed to be fighting terrorism, not seconds of signing an executive order that could actually save lives.

    Josh

    March 9, 2009 at 6:27 pm |
  592. aziz lalji

    Jack:

    I do not think this is a distraction. This is a step in the right direction. This move by President Obama will give new hope to not just the scientific community, but to all Americans and to our children that America will once again lead the world in research and scientific inquiry.

    Aziz Lalji – Illinois

    March 9, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  593. Jeff in Minnesota

    This is only a story because the right wing makes it a story.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  594. My V. Nguyen, San Jose CA

    Dear Jake:
    I don't agree with the Republicans' accusation. So far, the GOP had done nothing for working America, except sending American jobs overseas and encouraging outsourcing and illegal immigration for the last 8 years.

    President Obama had fought, succeeded, and signed the 1st Stimulus Package recently; he is now carrying his promises during the campaign to Americans on other issues.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:29 pm |
  595. hank

    Nope - this issue has been on the burner long before the economy tanked. It just so happens that nothing was going to change until a new administration was in power, and it just did.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:30 pm |
  596. Susie

    He is not distracting me...but then he never did from the realities of what I felt he would do if elected...and so far I am right...our economy is going down the tubes while the Dem's take our money and give it to people who do pay anything..

    It never ceases to amaze me how people categorize anyone who is a Republican must be a religious zealot. I for one am not religious and do not cling to the far right but simply want the economy on the right track without having to give my hard earned dollars to people who do not earn it.

    So far he has failed miserably and I cannot help but forget that until 2006 our economy was doing fine...it was not until the Dem's took over Congress and the House that it started to go downhill. Dem's are great at vicously attacking the Capitalist system that created this country while they are pining at being the poor victims that we taxpayers should give your money to...and while Pelosi, Reid and the rest of them are voting in this new bill to raise they salaries.

    Talk about Dem's believing anything...they would buy a bridge to nowhere and actually believe a road exists on the otherside..

    March 9, 2009 at 6:36 pm |
  597. Angela

    I thought he should have done this a few weeks ago. The economy is important but there are other important issues going on as well. Science should NEVER be sacrificed to ideology and it's time this was made clear.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:36 pm |
  598. Jim from Blue Bell

    Obama's only doing what he said he would do during the campaign. And that was back in the good economic times.... you remember.... last spring and summer! if it's a distraction, it's only because the Republicans are making it so. It's just more red meat for their base.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:37 pm |
  599. SoCooL Bob

    A lot of folks seem to be "complaining" that Obama is trying to do
    Too Many Things At Once

    In the modern world .. we call that "multi-tasking."
    It works really well when combined with Do One More Good Thing
    Over And Over And Over

    We need to SOLVE these PROBLEMS
    Not continue to wallow in them.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:38 pm |
  600. Doug

    Jack,

    As a researcher, I am pretty much for the develop of good scientific research. I think Obama can achieve some other lofty goals besides shoring up the economy. Remember, he has a very aggressive first year planned. So, why not focus on some other issues.

    As far as the republicans are concerned, thy do not know what they want except to bash democrats. I think they favor space exploration because the GOP left the mother ship along time ago.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:39 pm |
  601. Joseph Schweinzer

    Distraction? Only if the entirety of the US Federal Government can only focus on one topic at a time. Or was the NIH key in previous administrations' economic crisis teams?

    March 9, 2009 at 6:39 pm |
  602. Michael

    Liberating science from the clutches of the religious right can only be a positive development for the economy. Think of all the jobs to be created, not just from the research into stem cells, but from the implementation of the discoveries to flow from that research.

    This is President Obama showing that he can multi-task and is capable of looking further down the road than the next month or year. At least for the GOP's sake, they found a way to complain about this that doesn't IMMEDIATELY make them sound like ignorant backward hicks.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:40 pm |
  603. LUCY - ILLINOIS

    No it isn't a distraction. President Obama said he was for stem cell research when running for office. I am 70 years old and I think it is a wonderful idea. Whoever thought something like this would happen? I'll bet if a Republican had something seriously wrong, they would crowd in line. The Repubs are the ones that caused the economy problem, they should shut up and go admire RUSH, their leader.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:41 pm |
  604. DX in TX

    Jack
    Give me a break...smoke and mirrors is a Republican strategy. Republicans see the world the way they are not the way it is.
    President Obama has be open about his intentions on healthcare, education and stem cell research.

    Republicans can continue to grand stand and pose for the cameras while President Obama continues to do his job with or without their support.
    Obama/biden
    2008/2012

    March 9, 2009 at 6:41 pm |
  605. Mark

    One day the Republicans are saying Obama is NOT delivering the change he promised and the next day when he is delivering a change he absolutely without a doubt promised, it is a DISTRACTION from what he should be doing. Which is it? This is a big and complex country and we need a President who can do more than one thing at a time and an opposition party that can do more than just say NO. Maybe if President Bush had left the country in a little bit better shape. President Obama could afford to do one thing at a time.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:43 pm |
  606. Nick

    This is better news than all the news channels showing ONLY how the economy is getting worse everyday and making people more depressed.
    All the stupid news channels just like to give more 'frustrating' statistics just to get more eyeballs glued on the screen. yep – its is working too and your profits are definitely going up.. Please stop this negative media overkill on the state of the economy.

    After all what can the common person do except work hard and smart day after day..

    I really admire that someone NOW (never in last 8 years) working to get America back to shape... Coz it's proved by time, the more you invest and use newer technology, the more the country progresses for the better/faster and has an edge.. SO INVEST in/SPREAD TECHNOLOGY to the masses...

    March 9, 2009 at 6:43 pm |
  607. Phil

    What a dumb thought! We can't nor should be trapped by one problem - this country is in dire straights; the economy is but one problem the previous administration straddled us with.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:44 pm |
  608. Ven

    Stem cell research has nothing to do with the faith.
    Science deals with the research of things that can be perceived by the senses (external in nature) that includes any use of instruments that will enhance our perception. Faith deals with the research of things that can not be perceived by the senses ( internal in nature, not for preaching but for practicing in our privacy). Both should be used to enhance the human life. Science enhances the standard of living and faith enhances the standard of life itself as I have been taught.

    The distraction comes from the people to the people who are ignorant about this truth.

    Ven from Cary , NC

    March 9, 2009 at 6:44 pm |
  609. Boisepoet

    I know America has spent the last eight years with a president that was so busy subverting the Constitiution and invading nations for the benefit of his buddies (no bid contracts anyone?) that Republicans are not accustomed to a leader who can actually govern, but this is a stretch for even someone as partisan as Boehner.
    Are we supposed to tell scientists working on new developments to wait for the economy to get better?
    Are we supposed to tell teachers we can't look at education until the economy is better?
    Are we supposed to tell the uninsured they have to wait for medical care until the economy is better?

    This is what true leadership looks like. This what a government for the people looks like. Too bad Boehner and his ilk are just parodies of politicians and poor representatives of humanity.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:44 pm |
  610. Charles Archibald

    Copernicus, Galileo, DeCartes can return to the rest and comfort of their graves. The "dark ages" of the 21st century are over and
    relegated to history forever. Man's God given powers to question and understand his world are no longer fetted by the small minds of ignorant politicians and pseudo moralists who selfishly strive to better their lives at the expense of all others.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:45 pm |
  611. Robert

    It's about time science was given its rightful place at the federal government. A few more years and Bush might have had us all worshiping the Sun again.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:46 pm |
  612. Travis from TN

    We fight over this topic every presidency. Why can we not, with our current technology in cloning. rapidly clone the stems cells we already have and end the discussion.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:47 pm |
  613. Carlton

    If the economic crisis was a traffic accident resulting in a fatality, should the police not cover the body so passersby focus on the road ahead? The road ahead is through science. The economic crisis comes as a result of unregulating the financial growth speed zone. Calling stem cell research a distraction is mindless.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:53 pm |
  614. Puablo

    How long did it take for Obama to sign the change? A half hour? A half day? It's not Obama who is distracted, it's just a new way to harass the administration about changes that they don't like. Arguing directly against this change is one thing, saying it's a distraction from the economy is just showmanship.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:54 pm |
  615. Debbie

    This is not a distraction from anything – just the right thing to do!!!!

    March 9, 2009 at 6:54 pm |
  616. SeattleGadfly

    As a news story, it definately catches the attention, but I don't think there's much of anything that could distract the public attention away from our economy (or lack thereof) right now.
    When you consider that this decision will allow federal funding to go toward Stem Cell research, thereby removing the negative stigmas that has been associated with it, I think that it can only help the economy. There will be more funding available for this research which will allow agencies conducting this research to expand their operations.
    I don't expect the markets to surge back to life because of it, though. Obviously, there will not be an immediate up turn in the economy because of it, but I believe that it does create at least a handful of new immediate job opprotunities.
    Is it a distraction? Yes, a bit of one.
    Could it help the economy? Perhaps a bit.
    It's not a major story in light of the war and recession, but it is being treated like one. If anyone is to blame for the distraction, it is the news agencies rathere than the White House. (No offense CNN.)

    March 9, 2009 at 6:55 pm |
  617. bobby

    Now the president has found something else for the Republicans to whine about every hour. If he keeps trying to take on so much at once, people are never going to stop going on TV every hour telling the country to be afraid of the economy.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:55 pm |
  618. Ron

    Lies and distractions, smoke and mirrors, is what the Obama cult has depended on since long before the election. That's why they are where they are. P T Barnum's claim about one being born every minute was proven out on election day.

    Since they've been doing such things for so long, why stop now!

    March 9, 2009 at 6:58 pm |
  619. Marcus

    America never stops, and by sticking to the economy 100% of the time, any administration would be slowing down that never-ending marathon that is the United States. The GOP can say whatever they want about the Stem Cell funding being a distraction, but they will only bring more attention to the case at hand. This was a promise that President Obama made in the campaign, and by waiting for the economy to be solved (which may be in a hundred years) to fulfill campaign promises, there will be no change. This is a step forward for Science as well as America and if it distracts us from the falling economy, so be it.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:58 pm |
  620. Rich Mulvaney

    What should be pointed out here is that the big lie of the left is that Bush prohibited embryonic stem cell research,he only prohibited taxpayer monies for this type of research. All over the world and within our own country embryonic stem cell research has always been done.The greatest hope for cures of disease rests with adult stem cells. The ignorant left does not understand the difference. The Obama big show on this issue is another example of how this man has deceived the public and probably will for the next 8 years.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:59 pm |
  621. mjoyce

    Quote of White House-

    "But, the White House says that funding embryonic stem cell research is part of the administration’s plan to jolt the economy; with scientific and technological advances furthering the overall goals of creating jobs. It was also a campaign promise President Obama made"

    I thought his campaign promise was to veto all pork on congressional bills he would sign. What happened to his promise on this?? I would think that this would take precedent over all of his so called promises.
    It must be nice to be "king".. obviously his arrogance is showing as he certainly does not respect us the voting public.. just like all the other elected officials in our country and who's fault is this.. "ours" we voted them in..

    March 9, 2009 at 6:59 pm |
  622. Matt Simpson

    It is definitely a move to take the focus off the economy. Obama is all about orchestrated maneuvers. He and his team of handlers and teleprompters will eventually run out of side shows and attempts to remind people of George Bush and they will eventually have to stand on their own actions. He says he is "taking the politics out of science" – when has that ever happened? All he did was throw the politics over to the side of those who supported him, it did not change the issues or convince anyone to change sides. The only reason this was done was so he can take more tax payer dollars and hand them out to his political constituents. Everyone blabbers on about which "disease of the week" embryonic stem cells are supposed to cure, but NOTHING conclusive has been shown – it could be YEARS before there are any results, and they may NEVER yield anything productive. Just a lot of selfish people wanting handouts or big government to solve their problems.

    March 9, 2009 at 6:59 pm |
  623. Jack Kiesel

    Funny how the Republicans label everything a distraction that they don't agree with.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:00 pm |
  624. Lisa, Dallas, TX

    I'm not really sure what difference it's going to make anyway. Few will ultimately benefit from it if universal health care ever comes to fruition. I guess nobody has read anything about what some Dems have said about who will get what....but if your old or the treatment is too expensive, get ready to suffer unless of course, you've got connections.

    My husband happens to be an Obama supporter and is complerely disgusted at what he has been doing so far....I know we are screwed (being in the top 10% of income earners) so I just smile and tell him "ya got what you wanted" He thought so initially, now, not so much.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:01 pm |
  625. Matt

    Not a distraction as long as he follows it up with a 100% cut in government funded research in the field. The economy is key and this is wasted money unless you are in the .0000000001% of scientists that this helps. Besides, if you want the separation you should go all the way rather than continue to CREATE ideological debates.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:01 pm |
  626. Kevin from Austin

    This executive order has nothing to do with science, and Obama's policies will continue to put political ideology ahead of scientific research. George W. Bush was the first president to authorize any research involving embryonic stem cells, and most of the "progress" touted internationally is based on the existing stem cell lines already authorized. The paucity of results to date shows us that there is much more benefit from adult or other forms of stem cell research. The other comments illustrate the level of manipulation that has taken place, as other respondents clearly believe that patients around the world are benefitting from cures we cannot access because of past administration policies. To be clear, not one person on earth can claim to have been healed or treated from embryonic stem cell research to date. Rather than bludgeoning the religious right on this issue, we should focus our energies toward research that may actually result in significant medical findings.

    The cost of commoditizing children (through the creation and destruction of embryos) far exceeds the benefits, especially when there are viable, effective and proven alternatives. What is next, using orphans to harvest organs?

    March 9, 2009 at 7:01 pm |
  627. James Cooksey

    Of course not, Jack. We need to consider that we no longer have a simple president who can focus on only one thing at a time. Besides, President Obama himself is not focusing on stem cell research, he is merely implementing a policy that science and politics should be viewed differently.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:03 pm |
  628. sandlot

    Of course the Repubs think health care is a distraction, thats why they refused to do anything about it for the past eight years except make HMOS and the drug industry incredibly rich.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:03 pm |
  629. Don

    Obama making good on a campaign promise is now a "distraction?" Is it just me or does that sound like a pathetic attempt to retake a small measure of relevancy. It's time for Republicans to start saying something that shows they are at least in some small way still in touch with America.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:04 pm |
  630. BS

    What is always lacking by the Republican Party is how all of parts fit together. They conveniently can't see the whole picture. How convenient!!!
    They seem to ignore that additional expenditure for stem cell research to catch up to the rest of the world will add jobs to the economy.
    So what do we not understand here?

    March 9, 2009 at 7:04 pm |
  631. RM Kahn

    It's called multi-tasking. Maybe the Republican's have forgotten how to do that, since they are so bogged down in their own morass of self-serving values.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:06 pm |
  632. Eric

    They seem to forget that thier god's wife, Nancy Reagan, was all for stem cell research. I guess invoking him, much like thier constitutional invocations, only count when it serves thier purpose. When it actually serves the truth, they conveniently have a selective memory.

    Keep up the good work, Mr. President, of fixing our economy and removing the fascist anti-american policies that Herr Bush put into place over the past 8 years.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:08 pm |
  633. Peter Travisano

    Not only not a distraction but.a needed research tool for countless here-to-for incurable diseases and a boon to the economy as the research flourishes.

    I suggest that anyone with real moral qualms about the treatments this line of research produces simply boycott them if they are indicated for your illness. The rest of us will do otherwise.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:12 pm |
  634. Matt

    Funny how party people find this so simple to decide on. In reality, you are asking us to decide whether 5 of our tax dollars would be better spent curing a disease that might make our parents live longer or go to tax cuts that help feed my children now. This is only a distraction because of the media, but it is completely a waste.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:12 pm |
  635. joel palmer

    Jack

    Absolutely not a distraction but a key element in repealing the last eight years as fast as possible.

    There is a mountain of work to chip away at the crap piled up by Bush, Cheney and Rove. This is merely a down payment!

    March 9, 2009 at 7:13 pm |
  636. Tom Erskine

    Not reversing this policy would be the distraction, in my opinion. The scientific community has been literally hamstrung for the last 8 years by an incompetent, ideological, almost tyrannical group of pseudo-politicians. Research in this country had been frustrated by a litmus test that had no meaning—regardless how the result looked it had to comply with the ideology of the Right. (Does this not sound like the controls the Soviets put on artists, musicians, dancers, performers and all manner of cultural endeavors—all meant to serve the propaganda purposes of the promotion of the State?). Why were we so silent for so long??

    The Flat Earth Right Wing ConVERSAtives (they just talk and talk and talk!) don't see anything as good for America. Their litmus test is what's good for the Republican Party is the ONLY thing that's good for America...and theirs is the only opinion that counts...and look what they've done to MY COUNTRY—IT IS IN A SHAMBLES!!!

    March 9, 2009 at 7:13 pm |
  637. Scott

    Every minute of every day for Obama is a distraction, having so many messes to clean up. This one is done now, and can go away.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:14 pm |
  638. Mark Olsen

    Embryonic stem cell research is an ethical issue not a political one, as President Obama wants to present it. Every embryo has a unique DNA that no other human being has, had or will ever have. Our DNA is our human identity. The human DNA appears in the embryo from the moment the sperm fertilizes the egg. Killing an embryo to obtain body parts for other human beings, is totally unethical and barbaric in a civilized society. Big Universities and biochemical companies who supported Obama will benefit of this research as they will hold the patents that will be extremely profitable,

    March 9, 2009 at 7:14 pm |
  639. Perry

    Distraction?
    Hardly, a stroke of the pen and he's onto other things. A stroke of the pen and he's put some logic back in the drivers seat. A stroke of the pen, a short press conference and it's back to the economy. The GOP is showing its desperation, not to mention its general loathing for the general public with this move. A distraction? Not for those of us who can breath and walk at the same time.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:14 pm |
  640. Mike

    all of them gop and dems. destroying our economy and our children, our forests our oceans, our honor. Do you think they could ever find the right way.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:14 pm |
  641. EJ in metro Houston

    Jack..Thank God we have a president that can walk and chew gum at the same time. And from looking at the GOP and their "leader" Steele I guess that they can't focus on more than one thing at a time. Perhaps if the GOP would do something more than disagree and complain about what our president is trying to do and offer some help or answers then they could be of better use.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:16 pm |
  642. Ann

    Jack,

    I think the reversal is one of the smartest things the Obama administration can do right now. Opening up stem cell research gives American scientists more jobs and gets us one step closer to finding cures for diseases that have been halted because of the ignorance of the Bush administration.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:16 pm |
  643. Yobee

    I considered this guy to be one of the more reasonable hacks, but this is ludicrous. I will now park him in the Limbaugh 'look at me' corner and move on.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:16 pm |
  644. Ted

    That old argument may have worked in the past, however, nobody is taking their eye off the ball that being the economy. This research is a good thing a very good thing.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:16 pm |
  645. Dave in Savannah

    Yet another sign that the poor Republicans have nothing to offer. Saying no to everything isn't policy, it's stupidity.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:19 pm |
  646. Josh

    I do think that President Obama signed this bill now so that it would show he is "keeping his campaign promises" and doing something his base would approve of, while the economy steadily declines further during his short time in office. So far the economy has not responded well to his idea of "stimulus" and economic growth, and he definately needed to make it public that he was doing something "progressive." Unfortunately, his critics are right that this type of "progress" only will further divide the country along partisan and ideological lines.

    It is comical to see this Administration assert that this move was about "science" and not about political ideology. It clearly was about ideology. As an individual with a background in science, it saddens me that more press and the entire Democratic party fail to emphasize more funding for current stem cell research methods that have no ethical considerations involved i.e. stem cells harvested from chord blood, adult donors etc. Very real science is ALREADY being done with success with these types of cells and cures are already beginning to be developed.

    No, the real question involved with the Embryonic debate is whether we will, as a society, recognize that each of those embryos represent with absolute genetical distinction the status that each of us once held and recognize their common humanity with us. Or will we rather pursue our own selfish aims to prolong our own lives and institute policies that promote the purposeful and continued creation of these Embryos just so they can be destroyed for our own ends. Each of us was once a distinct embryo. Perhaps some of you who are so in favor of this research would better serve the rest of us if you would volunteer yourself to destruction and research on your body for the medical advancement of the rest of us. The world would be a better place if you did. This is not a religious issue. There are individuals within the scientific community who hold no religious affiliation and retain expert knowledge concerning this "science" who object to the necessity, let alone the forced public financing, of this ethically questionable research because it represents a basic violation of human rights and dignity. Shame on those of you who wish to simplify this issue as being about some "uneducated, religious nuts" who just oppose this research because it is "abortion." There are educated individuals from all faiths and none who defiantly proclaim that this research is immoral. Shame on President Obama for not using his newfound power and authority to truly stand up for the weakest and most vulnerable among us, rather than just please those who wish to serve themselves through politics and "science" at the expense of the lives of others.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:19 pm |
  647. Rich from New York

    Jack, I do believ it is a distraction from the current economic situation and I also it is just a payback for favors and donations. Right now there are people really suffering from this economy, couldn't this money that the gov is going to spend be used to help these people? Also this is unproven science, I think right now we have things that we know we must fix, why spend money to do something that may or may not lead to something? This research is also being done by private industry, why get involved in it? Could it be to get more gov control? I guess we might as well nationalize this to. Socialism is alive and well in the US today.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:21 pm |
  648. Ed

    Obama is doing something most of the politcal herd seem to have trouble understanding; President Obama is simply fulfilling a campaign promise. His promise was to do this and do it as soon as he entered office. What I fail to comprehend is why some Republicans are making this a distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:22 pm |
  649. Tony

    Plain and straight-forward – Republicans are a bunch of morons stuck in the old days...As we all know the party is the least technologically inclined too. I think it's time we have a young and hip president like Barack Obama who doesn't base his decisions on his religious beliefs compared to these racist morons who can't even count or spell...Just look at the people in the states who are republicans..Nothing but a bunch of idiots and hillbillies....of course they will disagree....Thank GOD I was raised in a state where we aren't taught to be smart and not stupid like the GOP.... 🙂

    March 9, 2009 at 7:22 pm |
  650. Joe in Chicago

    No Just the opposite. Not only will it help put logical thought and the scientific process back into our government, it will clear up a bottle neck of procedural red tape that has wasted money time and JOBS. I believe this is a step in the right direction and not a distraction from the economy. This is only one of the many many decisions that our leaders have to simultaneously or in quick succession make in order to put the great nation we live in back on its feet.

    Legally, can the former president be charged with criminal acts for how badly he fleeced the American people for the past eight years?

    March 9, 2009 at 7:24 pm |
  651. Joe from Ohio

    The only ones being distracted are the Republilcans who are looking for anything to criticize Pres. Obama with. Quit wasting our time and spend some of your effort on fixing the economy.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:24 pm |
  652. Linda

    I think the Republicans have done their damage for the last 8 years. If they would just keep work with the county and quit putting in their distracting comments we would be better off. Obama did not create this mess. THE REPUBLICANS DID. So Shut Up and Help.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:25 pm |
  653. Joshua, Los Angeles

    This question is idiotic! Of course not! Obama has the most important job in America. Do you think the scope of it is limited to one problem?

    March 9, 2009 at 7:25 pm |
  654. Neil

    I think people should not forget, obama is a president ofthe free world. he should have the capacity to do ten things at same time. not only to economy.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:25 pm |
  655. Mike

    Stem cell research is one of many areas that will spur innovation and new jobs in health care. I am glad to see the president correct an ill-considered policy that was sending research abroad and choking medical progress at home.

    Ensuring good science and health policy is one of the president's responsibilities. It is not a distraction. It is an essential part of his job, and one that should not be neglected.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:27 pm |
  656. Bob

    Only if you REALLY WANT it to be.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:27 pm |
  657. Gary LaPalombara

    Its about time we allowed science to progress in this country after 8 years of being hand-cuffed by politics.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:27 pm |
  658. Henry Miller, Cary, NC

    It's certainly no distraction, but it provides a handy excuse for the neo-con bible-thumpers to try to make it one.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:28 pm |
  659. milton ousland

    I dont know about the rest of you. But one of the basic skills a person develops is Multitasking. Perhaps the GOP just isnt there yet. This may explain the last 8 years.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:30 pm |
  660. Joe in Chicago

    I agree with David in Atlanta

    March 9, 2009 at 7:31 pm |
  661. Fred

    Who wants a President that can't multi-task? Sure, the economy may be the worst problem Bush left us, but there's absolutely no reason Obama shouldn't simultaneously work on fixing some of the other damage from the right-wingers. Anything that can be done with a simple executive order isn't much of a distraction. Bravo, Obama! Let's free science from superstition for good.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:33 pm |
  662. HN

    After eight years with a president who could not walk and chew gum at the same time, it's not surprising that the Republicans are "distracted" by a leader who can manage to keep more than one thought in his head at once. While there is no question that fixing the economy is and should be President Obama's first priority, I'd hate to think that other critical issues - like the prospect of combatting disease through stem cell research - must remain on the shelf while politicians fight over bailout and stimulus packages.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:33 pm |
  663. Acrab

    For the reps (the ones who like money, not the fundamentalists): Do you realize how much money there is to be made from finding a cure for spinal chord injuries? Parkinsons? Cancer? Alzheimers? If one scientist out of the millions in the U.S. with the best medical technology in the world finds a cure for one of these, the worldwide and domestic profits would be incredible. Not only would that scientist (whether government or university) create a tremendous amount of wealth through patenting the technique, but the cure would be our first real export in over 10 years. How many people do you think have just one of those diseases world wide? What if all of them needed to pay the U.S., or an industry in the U.S., to get a cure (which they most certainly want...high demand right?)? Yeah, economic depression gone (creating jobs, huge influx of cash, higher taxes already in place etc.), profits and healthy people abound. Why is this bad?

    March 9, 2009 at 7:34 pm |
  664. Harry Katz

    The Republicans don't realize that the American electorate is getting smarter. We voted Bush in in 2000, basically 50% did, and did so again i 2004. Then, between 2004 and 2008 America started getting smarter, thanks to the young people who became old enough to vote. And an African-American beat a very strong Republican candidate. Now, it's safe to say, that we no longer will tolerate the Republicans' ability to palm off balderdash to the American electorate, such as focusing on stem cell research is now a distraction. The Republicans would always get away with convincing those of us that weren't so smart. Those days are over, but the Republicans are still trying, because that's the only way they know how. They voted in an African-American chairman, to try to copycat having Obama at the Democratic helm, and all they end of getting was a scaredy-cat Uncle Tom who was put in his place just hours after standing up to Rush Limbaugh. What a show the Republicans continue to give us! But now we can just laugh without having to worry at all about them!

    March 9, 2009 at 7:35 pm |
  665. Raj kandada

    Let the sore Losers talk. I don't think neither Obama nor the americans should care about the barking republicans. We all know that barking dogs seldom bite.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:37 pm |
  666. Roger

    After eight years of George Bush, it is understandable that Republicans have gotten used to the idea that a president can do only one thing at a time. Bush left the country saddled with myriad problems and if Obama tackled only the biggest, we would still be saddled with too many when his term ends. Barack Obama seems to be doing a damn good job of everything he has touched thus far. It's so refreshing to have a president who is smart.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:37 pm |
  667. Brandon

    Jack,
    The Presidents job requires him to be able to handle multiple decisions at one time. Do the republicans really expect him to ignore other issues during these tough times? I would imagine nothing would get done because it appears the issues with the economy are going to continue for a while.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:37 pm |
  668. Sandra Commito

    This subject is not only a distraction; it is an outright deception.

    What is lost in this media frenzy designed to heighten Obama's stature, while demeaning our former President is that stem cells exist in adults.

    One of the most intriguing scientific discoveries made during Bush's term in office was that adult bone marrow may be a readily available source which would eliminate the need to destroy a human embryo and overcome all of the moral and ethical issues involved.

    Sandra, Atlanta, Georgia

    March 9, 2009 at 7:37 pm |
  669. John

    It's not distracting me from seeing the Dow at a 12 year low again. So much for balancing the budget...

    March 9, 2009 at 7:40 pm |
  670. R.marie & Stephen Carter

    Jack, Research "is" necessary for progress. I just recently had two heart attacks, one major. I was told l lost a big part of my heart muscle to damage that was done. When I went into the emergency room and was saved, the doctor went in through my right groin area into my valve?! I got two stent placed in. I thought how barbaric, but thank goodness these doctors come up with these doozies. There is a lot of knowledge that can be gained and lives to save. God gave us brains to use and for love, good, and saving each other. Therefore, it is not a distraction. Obama said he can walk and chew gum and he's just proving it. It's sad but the end would definately justify the mean, especially if these embryos are already here. No one would have died in vain. Moreover, our youngest heroes.

    Ginou

    March 9, 2009 at 7:40 pm |
  671. SHL, TX

    As a research scientist, I do not think the lifting of the ban on funding of embryonic stem cell research is of much scientific significance. It is just a political gimmick. In a funny sort of way, the Bush's ban in funding of stem cell research has led to major effort and advances in research in the area of non-embryonic stem cells. As a result, we are now learning a lot more about the pliability of these non-embryonic stem cells and the information has provided many scientists to now realize that there are other stem cells around that could be used for various tissue repair purposes. With these advances, many scientists will probably continue their work in non-embryonic stem cells rather than embryonic stem cells.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:40 pm |
  672. Leland Traiman

    Boy, those Republicans are desparate for an issue. Just because President Bush could not do two things at once does not mean it is true for other presidents, or even your average Joe. Let's buy them a big bag full of apples and oranges so they can spend the next two years comparing them.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:41 pm |
  673. Michael Shores

    If merely reversing an executive order is a distraction, then what should one make of Cantor whining about it?

    March 9, 2009 at 7:41 pm |
  674. Irwin, Thousand Oaks, CA

    Just because a few religious fanatics want to make this an issue, the media goes along and promotes this as a 'distraction' or 'divisiveness'. Most people in the 21st century don't consider it a distraction; they consider it necessary for scientific advancement in the alleviation of human suffering!

    March 9, 2009 at 7:42 pm |
  675. Banker

    Republicans believe that a fertilized egg that is used in stem cell research is like an abortion. Yet, these unused fertilized eggs will be disgarded (as in throw in the garabage) if they aren't used for research. Their reasoning is flawed (as usual).

    The republicans themselves, are the distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:43 pm |
  676. Steve

    I don't see why it's so hard for Republicans to grasp that President Obama can chew gum and walk at the same time. Maybe because President Bush couldn't?

    March 9, 2009 at 7:45 pm |
  677. Scott

    It doesn't matter what I say. What matters is that people are reacting to your column, and that keeps you rich, and all of us distracted.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:47 pm |
  678. Alice Newman

    The Republicans, searching to be something relevant, something other that the party of Nancy Reagan "Just Say No." have learned two new words. One is designed to frighten people – "socialism" . The other is "distraction". Being the Masters of Spin, the only distraction is the PR releases from the Republican party ... no solutions ... just carp and complain and attack.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:47 pm |
  679. Neal

    This is indeed a big distraction. Having the government spend tax payers money on stem cell research when nearly half the population considers it the destruction of life is immoral and a clear imposition of belief system of one group over the other. It is anti-secular. It is not the religious right that is the problem but rather the "church of the liberals" that is.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:48 pm |
  680. Wes

    Well, Jack, I sense some hostility in the populace. The "Melting Pot" has melted itself. My advice is to be really nice to the President, for now. Hey, you you want to get a seat at the restaurant, right? Be nice.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:49 pm |
  681. Sean

    Why do people think embryonic stem cell research is a cure-all? The public has been deceived that this WILL cure cancer, this WILL cure Parkinson's, and the only road-block to this is a rightist regime. The potential profits of embryonic stem cell research have been hyperbolized to push a certain agenda, side-stepping the fact that this will destroy life to potentially, ideally, hypothetically, hopefully, maybe save or advance life.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:49 pm |
  682. Retta Crawford

    Hell no its a Life Saving Effort like everything President Obama is trying to do after Bush's mind...Geesh this is science trying to give cures for life not kill in war for profit .....

    March 9, 2009 at 7:50 pm |
  683. Jimmy

    So, just because I happen to believe that life begins at conception, I'm a religious fanatic? You left-wingers are whacks. My belief that life begins at conception has nothing to do with religion. Didn't the Germans do experiments in the name of science during WWII. And since I believe that life begins at conception, then the things done to embryos are just as horrific in my opinion.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:50 pm |
  684. Sergey

    Jack, it doesn't distract me! What really distracts me is some people who still live in the 19th century and oppose stem cell research!

    March 9, 2009 at 7:50 pm |
  685. john

    Create not only possibly create a solution to life threatening illnesses had by two of my loved-ones... but *maybe* create additional career and job opportunities as entire industries tend to spring up around new science? And maybe just make the USA on par with other countries in terms of reconciling politics, science and religion. No offense to plenty of well meaning people from the middle-east... but the USA is ONLY behind some of the theocratic states there in terms of wealthy countries allowing religion to stunt technological developments. Oh wait a minute... even Islamic countries generally embrace both science and religion... And we're no longer wealthy. Tradition and religion are great, but an unwavering alliance in doctrine is what in part led to the European Dark Ages. Which America is fairly close to in terms of lack of social and cultural progress.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:50 pm |
  686. tom

    Maybe Obama should have spent time reading the bail out bill he signed instead; maybe then he would have known there was pork included.

    On topic, those who say this will create jobs is uneducated on economic drivers.

    I do happen to agree with the decision.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:51 pm |
  687. Bert

    As a recovering republican, this is just one more reason for me to bid goodby to the party I supported for 40 years. That party has become a distraction from running the country.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:51 pm |
  688. Cory from Dallas, Tx

    To be honest. Who cares if it is a distraction from the economy? It is a good distraction. If handled properly, stem research could cure cancer, improve recovery from strokes, improve hearing. Basically cure a lot of things that before now seemed impossible to solve. Appoint a Czar over the studies and implement laws and procedures to insure public safety.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:51 pm |
  689. Rocky Lang

    Tell Mr. Canter, a distraction is when you have a diabetic daughter who has to have her blood sugar checked every night at midnight and 3 and pray that you won't find her in a coma in the morning. How dare he say helping finding a cure via embryonic stem cells is a distraction from the problem his party created?

    March 9, 2009 at 7:51 pm |
  690. California Gold

    Pssssst.

    No one is ignoring the economy. No one is ignoring the downward spiral of unemployment. No one is ignoring Iraq. No one is ignoring the collapse of the auto industry. No one is ignoring the need for healthcare reform. This is a great big country with thousands of employees and elected officials who are capable of doing more than one thing at a time.

    "Job One" does not mean it's the only job to take care of.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:52 pm |
  691. Randy

    Science beats superstition hands down. Obama is just fixing the wrong that has been done to our country by the Republicans. He got a ton more work to do so give the guy the respect and get him some rope. So far this is just one of many Republican wrongs that he is going to correct.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:54 pm |
  692. Sue

    Is Obama’s stem cell reversal a distraction…only if we assume that the President of the US can only endeavor to solve one problem at a time. Unlike the previous administration, Obama seems to be able to multitask.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:55 pm |
  693. Sue Bear

    Stem cell research is vital. How can research that will potentially help millions be considered a distraction. To me it is common sense.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:56 pm |
  694. James Qutami

    We destroy human life on a daily basis through war and hunger, yet we're so concerned about preserving the life of a stem cell? Are you kidding me?

    March 9, 2009 at 7:56 pm |
  695. galileo

    I have a young daughter with leukemia and a young son with a bad heart valve. Science can help them, religion just gets in the way of a cure. Its funny how the GOP's Arlen Spectre was so against stem cell research till he got cancer. Changed his tune real quick. If your faith stops you from using the cure go ahead and die and meet God. Be my guest, but dont force my children to not be allowed a cure.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:57 pm |
  696. tom

    Please look at the details; a) this lifts the ban of federal aid to researchers who want to use a different line of stem cells.

    From that perspective, this is not a driver of long term job creation in the USA and should not be viewed as such as some are trying to do.

    I agree with the decision, but would rather the "stimulus fund" actually stimulate job creation of long term good paying jobs that in turn themselves create other jobs.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:57 pm |
  697. Tracy

    Of course it's a distraction from the economy, and a welcome one. Bringing real science back to the White House was one of Obama's campaign promises, and a relatively easy one to meet given the more daunting task of fixing the Reagan/Clinton/Bush economic mess. Folks need to see both long term and short term fixes – it can't all be, "Look to tomorrow." This is an immediate resolution that helps redefine both the role of religion and pseudo-science in politics and resulting public policies. So, sure, it's a feelgood measure, but it is a welcome change to the gloom and doom of the economy and two wars.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:57 pm |
  698. Brad Hyman

    We are consumed by economic issues, and often don't pause to realize who we are and what we do. America still must awake in the morning, go to bed at night, and wake up the next morning. The country must move forward and grapple with all the other issues and not intellectually nor politically stagnate. It is not a distraction; it is getting on with other business, irrespective of which side of the stem cell 'argument' each of us takes.

    March 9, 2009 at 7:58 pm |
  699. Jim

    If Republicans feel "distracted" by President Obama exercising his executive authority in the same manner, and to the same extent, as former President Bush, can I suggest yoga... or, perhaps, meditation .. to refocus their minds.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:00 pm |
  700. faith

    Jack,

    This is only a distraction for those want and need it to be determined so in order to move forward thier jealous, racist, small minded agenda, but one must remember you reap what you so. If the Republicans and naysayers are using every thing but the kitchen sink to halt the progress of this administration, the same tactics will be used against them in the next election and they will never be successful.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:01 pm |
  701. Carool from Missouri

    Jack,
    I believe President Obama can multi-task. I beleve he is starting everything he promised he would. It's just that the repubs can't multi-task. Speaking of cattle repubs still believe there are wmd. If repub's believe Bush, Cheney, Rove and Libby there no talking them down. I say repub's just jump already.
    Mr. William Courtland,
    If you have all the answers to the diseases, why don't Americans know this?
    What document are talking about?

    March 9, 2009 at 8:01 pm |
  702. Bill

    Jack, someone mentioned how the stocks involved in the stem cell research were up 40% today!

    So what, the majority of us care about what the whole health of the stock market, and since we have elected this new bum of a president, the market speaks of his economic policies and distractions.

    President Clinton was the best at distractions, as you always knew when a cruise missile was going to be launched. It appears that Osama (Obama) has learned well.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:02 pm |
  703. JBR

    This president knows how to multi-task, unlike a bush!
    A few minutes signing a bill, which any developed, enlightened society would have signed without question as soon as the advancement in the field became available, isn't going to detract from the focus on the economy. It might even create some jobs in science!
    The only people hyping and egging people on is the media!
    Most young, intelligent people I know have switched off the news, to avoid insanity! They pick the news they want to hear about on the internet, and so will I as soon as I get a fast laptop!

    60-year old female

    March 9, 2009 at 8:02 pm |
  704. Mary

    It's all a distraction from what is causing our woes. Namely the loss of JOBS, JOBS, JOBS - Embriotic Stem Cell research will NOT create an economic boost - we have had stem cell resarch going on right along.
    If the President doesn't hurry up and get the ball rolling on jobs, his 100 days will be up and we'll be in worse shape than when he started. We are already millions of jobs lost, the couple million he promised to create will pale in comparrison to what we are losing daily.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:02 pm |
  705. beevee

    It is not a distraction at all. It is the right thing to do to come up with news ways of treating diseases. It should have been long time ago. We are now behind many European nations and S. Korea on this cutting edge research. Thanks to the GOP leadership who were dictated by religious groups were left behind in science.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:03 pm |
  706. Dave Moldoff

    Jack, not on your life is it a distraction. For my life, even less. Bush set the industry back 8 years. There should be a law against it.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:03 pm |
  707. Jost

    Distraction – Do they think the American public is dumb enough to think this? Get past this crap, stem cell research saves, your useless war kills. Your comments to sidetrack the American public to your side futile.

    The "Some Republicans" that are yapping their jaws, need a swift kick in booty AND HARD!

    March 9, 2009 at 8:04 pm |
  708. SGJ

    It is pretty apparent after 8 years and 6 weeks that republicans represent the worst of humanity... division under the guise of religion ... out right lying to settle old scores and invade a country ... repressive policy that revent progress reminiscent of the tatics used on Da Vinici ... willfull disregard and arrongance for rules ... the list goes on and on... and my personal favorite ... a utter lack of awareness or willingness to listen to needs and desires of the nation

    March 9, 2009 at 8:04 pm |
  709. Brian Ont. Canada

    Jack,
    Don't you think with all the distractions that are around us everyday anyways(finacial, war, poverty etc. etc.) that between the News conglomerates and governments, someone could put a positive spin on the economy no mater how minut it might be, just to give people a small glimmer of hope. It could work.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:04 pm |
  710. Eric Nicolas

    Perhaps it's just recognition that there is more to being the President than fixating on the economy. The Bush administration did a lot more than just financial damage, and these problems have to be addressed. Thank you President Obama for recognizing that stem cell research is the only path we currently have to finding cures for some of our most deadly diseases,

    March 9, 2009 at 8:04 pm |
  711. Mike

    No. What's distracting is the Republicans' incessant fingerpointing and bellyaching. I would hope we elected a president that can do more than one thing at a time (which I think we did), and if it were me or my child who could benefit from stem cell research, would I want to hear "wait until the economy gets better?" Republicans are proving again and again why they don't get elected–it's a party of negativity and blame led by a blowhard radio personality.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:05 pm |
  712. Carolyn

    Obama is very politically astute...this is a distraction anyway you cut it. I am aware of those who have chronic, debilitating diseases...What all the embryonic stem cell proponents fail to realize is that adult stem cells are already doing amazing things–the woman in England who regrew trachea with her own adult stem cells. With one's own cells, there is no chance of rejection, a factor the embryonic stem cell scientists somehow have failed to talk about much less remedy. Those who favor this reversal are just as ideologically driven as those who would seek to continue the ban. There is a values judgment placed on this either way, so you can't talk about ideology being only on one side of the debate.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:07 pm |
  713. Michael

    I cannot see where anyone can call research on cures a for diabetes, Parkinson or spinal injuries a distraction. What is more of a distraction is having a child at the age of 4yo be diagnosed with a disease like diabetes and waking up in the middle of the night checking her blood sugar, or when the common flu can cause the child to be admitted to the hospital because their blood sugar gets really high or low. Or wondering if that same child would ever be able to have a family of their own. Or trying to explain to that child why they cannot have a candy bar when checking out of a grocery store. Why should we put so much effort into helping the banks and car companies out when they created their own problems? I say let the economy wait. Put that money into research so others can have the quality of life that many others take advantage of.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:08 pm |
  714. Serge Crespy Collingwood, ON

    Dear Jack:

    Our economies are borrowing from future generations; likewise, stem-cell research harnesses "futures"; all, for having it "Now"! .... The positive spin: Eventually, "Perfect Humanoids" wil relieve us of our responsibilities and problems, including having to deal with normal human beings.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:09 pm |
  715. Jesse Vargas

    The Bush Administration over the course of 8 years used issues like abortion, gay marriage, religious morality, and teen access to birth control to distract the populace from the damage their lack of regulatory policies and quid pro quo political deals between big corporations and the government were causing. Such distractions have clearly paved the way to the state we are now in. In signing this order, President Obama is not distracting the nation, nor is he distracted from it, rather he is re-focusing America on what is important and shedding light on the false choices that once were used to occupy Americans while GOP and big money robbed them of their livelihoods and retirements.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:10 pm |
  716. James

    No more of a distraction than the original ban was. Once again, republicans are condescending the 80% of those polled who are in favor of the reversal. They seem to think we have a short attention span. It's only the other 20%, the right wing extremists, who are stupid enough to actually believe that anyone could possibly forget about the terrible economic crisis that they alone are to blame for.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:11 pm |
  717. Sheldon

    Distraction? There are so many things that need to get done. Keep in mind, the catastrophe that is our current economy happened in just a few short years while scientists, politicians and celebrities alike have been fighting for the advancement of stem cell for over a decade. Sure the economy is important but so are the life-saving treatments that can come from stem cell research.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:12 pm |
  718. Colin

    I agree it was silly for Jack to even ask this. Yes, fixing the economy is important...no, it is not the ONLY issue. Obama's job description is not limited to fixing the economy!

    March 9, 2009 at 8:13 pm |
  719. marina

    No! And what difference does it make. This is long overdue!

    March 9, 2009 at 8:15 pm |
  720. michael calligeros

    why are you making this an issue? you are creating the distraction.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:15 pm |
  721. Alan Fisher

    I wonder which jobs the Republicans think are important to preserve or create? What's wrong with increasing employment of scientists and physicians? Scientific research produces jobs too! By the way, why are jobs for artists, architects, engineers less valuable than jobs for auto workers?

    March 9, 2009 at 8:18 pm |
  722. MikeG

    This is hardly a distraction. I would consider this one of the most important things the President can do. No longer are religious fundamentalists who decided that science is some kind of witchcraft controlling us. Seriously, I’m surprised Bush didn’t bring back witch burnings for anyone who graduated with a degree in biology or chemistry.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:20 pm |
  723. Craig

    It is only a distraction if they want it to be. As I recall, the Republicans are the master at distractions to avert attention from all the stuff they try to pull. I think if someone is going on to create a distraction, it is the Republicans causing it again. Everyone else just wants to solve some problems that have, until now, been unsolveable with the republican roadblocks thrown up to create failures.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:21 pm |
  724. David Goldman

    Let's put aside the fact that this research will saves lives. It is also good economics. America has long lead the world in the next big economic growth areas. Those will likely be biomedics and green technology. Thanks to 8 years of Republic distractions, the U.S. is now behind most contries in these two vital areas. This is shocking and unacceptable. Wish he made the change day one.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:23 pm |
  725. Chris

    Jack,

    What is a distraction is the notion that stem cell research was delayed in any way because of Bush's policies – it is a well known fact that many avenues were available to federally funded researchers to obtain stem cells – from existing lines that were excluded from the Bush's original declaration to stem cells derived from non-embrionic sources. In addition, privately finded researchers were never under any sort of restriction in the first place. Obama's grandstanding with this issie is pure showmanship and yes, a big distraction from the real work at hand. Of course, based on how horrendously he has handled the financial crisis up to this point we should probably all be grateful he is distracted from his goal of running us all into the poor house as soon as possible.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:23 pm |
  726. Robert Petrick

    During the 1930’s and 40’s a man in Germany by the name of Josef Mengele conducted experiments that also denigrated and destroyed human life. At that time the German press lauded the experiments as advancements in science and good for mankind. How history repeats itself. I find this most interesting. Shalom.
    Robert in New Jersey

    March 9, 2009 at 8:23 pm |
  727. Alan

    And I suppose that if the President spent a few moments of his day to discuss national security instead of the economy that would be a distraction too? I believe that the President has a cabinet full of competent people to help so that he can simultaneously juggle many important issues. Geeze, lose a couple of elections and the Republicans go all to pieces!

    March 9, 2009 at 8:24 pm |
  728. bernie

    The only distraction here is Congressman Cantor. Obama is doing just what he said he would and just what over half those that voted elected him to do.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:24 pm |
  729. Bob

    Why are Obama supporters (Democrats/Liberals) so mean?

    That is the distraction.

    Better get together with the rest of your American brothers to save the country before we slip past the point of no return.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:25 pm |
  730. Ken in STL

    It is not a distraction, but with the recent advancements from two separate laboratories in taking adult skin cells back to a stem cell state... why proceed with embryonic stem cell research? Why not focus on this new process of obtaining an infinite amount of stem cells?! Use Federal money for that. We don't have any more Federal money anyway do we? We are flushing it away bailing out crooks like AIG.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:26 pm |
  731. Christopher

    Wow! It's fun vent hate for the Republican party. But let's remember it's actually George W. Bush who first made Federal funds available to stem cell related topics. There was no "ban" on stem cells. It just limited research to existing lines of cells.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:27 pm |
  732. christine S.

    I've never understood the GOP argument on this. Almost everyone knows someone affected by neurological problems: Alzheimers, Parkinson's, strokes,etc. These cells are NOT humans with feelings or conciousness. Most are disposed of as garbage. Which is better, the garbage heap or research that might save millions?

    March 9, 2009 at 8:28 pm |
  733. Ann

    I thank god the President has passed the Bill for this research. It has nothing to do wth the bank failures, foreclosures- Let the research begin

    March 9, 2009 at 8:37 pm |
  734. Irwin

    Everyone knows that the current administration is probably overwhelmed right now in dealing with the economic crisis. Nevertheless, I do not believe that simply reversing the Bush policy with an executive order is a distraction for them. Obama did not use enormous amounts of money in deliberations and coming to the decision. His decision does bring up the issue about how much money should be devoted to stem cell research. Yes, research could lead to cures for terrible diseases, but are we not in a severe recession? I think we could devote some of the funds toward helping people now.

    March 9, 2009 at 8:38 pm |
  735. kinekal

    Ya right. Give me a break. where were these people when we went to war based on ideology? Where were they when our solders being killed for the war we were not supposed to start? Please let us reason based on fact not ideology. Let us not create a division between true science and personal faith (not religion)

    March 9, 2009 at 9:07 pm |
  736. Chuck Bonner

    Let's untangle the lies here, and it is plain to see that Obama's move today is more about politics than about science.

    1, The Bush administration did not put a halt, ban, or otherwise impede stem cell research. We hear it all the time, but this is simply not true. The Bush administration prohibited federal funding of most _embryonic_ stem cell research. Stem cell research proceded just fine with federal funding under the Bush administration. President Obama's move today is political appeasement of the ignorant who believe that Bush prohibited stem cell research.

    2. Embryonic stem cell research holds little promise for useful treatments of human disease. _Adult_ stem cell therapies are already far advanced in animal studies, and very close to human applications. Today's grandstanding did _nothing_ to bring these promising lines of research closer to fruition. Quite the opposite, newly available funding for embryonic stem cell research will draw funding and brainpower _away_ from the more promising _adult_ stem cell research.

    3. Embryonic stem cells can do nothing that adult stem cells can't do, except to raise the risks of tissue rejection and graft-versus-host disease. Only _adult_ stem cells, harvested from the patient's own tissue, can fulfill the promise of stem cell research with absolutely no risk of rejection or graft-versus-host disease.

    All things considered, scientific understanding favors _adult_ stem cell research as more worthy of funding. Only political posturing to appease the anti-Bush crowd favors embryonic stem cell research.

    March 9, 2009 at 9:16 pm |
  737. A. Darden

    Whenever President Obama does something, have anyone notice that the first thing people like Cantor, Boehner, and the Republicans do is come before a mic and go on the attack. They don't come up with any answers, it's only what the President is doing wrong. They are being loyal soldiers to King Rush, their agenda is to see to it that the President fail. It makes no sense that if these embroyos are no longer wanted by who they belong to, and they will just end up thrown away, why can't you take them to see if they can help fine cures to terrible diseases? How is that killing? Isit better to toss them in a dump somewhere? Cantor and his buddies are the one who are trying to distract the people. Because they have no answers, they are the same worn out answers that they tried the last eight years. Which help cause this crisis.

    March 9, 2009 at 9:35 pm |
  738. D Nelson

    No, it isn't a distraction. Did they think he was trying to distract the public from the economy by making them focus on stem cell research? He simply signed an executive order. Done. The shortest distraction in history.
    Did they mean that he is trying to do too much at once and should just focus on the economy? Well, maybe they have short attention spans and a limited capacity to focus on more than one thing at a time, but that isn't the way it should be.
    Not only is there no distraction, there is no increased division in the country. The division came when Bush banned Federal funding of stem cell research. It divided the public from the Bush administration. The vast majority of Americans wanted it funded. Obama has repaired the division.
    The Republican argument is weak in this case.

    March 9, 2009 at 9:38 pm |
  739. Michael

    Jack, lets face the fact that in the past several months the Republicans, or what's left of them, haven't offered anything that hasn't been proven to work in the past. Tax cuts? Restricting spending? Saying 'No' to everything and anything the democrats did? Do they really think people are as stupid as they are? People are far more aware of the underlying political ploys than they ever were during the Bush years due to the explosion of inter connectivity of the world...and it's starting to show. It saddens me that its come down to this, a party that in years past was much different, but now they just fight for their own positions of power, and nothing else matters.

    These people are living in a dream world–if these senators and house representatives could step away from their posh life styles and scamming and million dollar homes (all five or six or however many they have), they'd see that people are scared. This was a mess caused by years of misuse and abuse of executive power, borderline criminal. I think they're a little out of it when they say that allowing federal funding for embryonic stem cell research, a prospect that could once again jump start US research and development, is a distraction.

    Wanna talk about distractions? How about when the Iraq war was going up in flames and good American boys and girls were getting killed, including one of my classmates?

    Or Katrina? Or when the economy started melting and the Republicans could only sputter and stutter about tax cuts and bailouts?

    Heres' the kicker, how about the doubling of the national debt from 5 trillion to 10 trillion and counting? The weight of that money, in single dollar bills, with 1 million dollars equaling approximately 2200 LBS, equates to eleven billion pounds. That's close to twice the weight of Concrete in the Hoover Dam. You could see a stack of money that big from space–but wait, where'd it go? That's the distraction!

    Everyone needs to focus behind the president, who has all the appearance of knowing that we have to regain control before things get better. No more of 'No' and no more distractions!

    March 9, 2009 at 9:49 pm |