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Candidate Positions on Stem Cells

Read the full responses from candidates below. “Answer option” is the choice given in the quiz, and “Candidate’s position” shows the candidate’s response to MPR News.

Question: Should federal funding be used to expand embryonic stem cell research?
Dean BarkleyDean Barkley ANSWER OPTION: Federal funding should be used to expand embryonic stem cell research, even if that research uses viable human embryos.

Norm ColemanNorm Coleman ANSWER OPTION: No federal funding should go toward research that harms viable human embryos.
CANDIDATE'S POSITION: Federal dollars should be used only on research that does not use viable embryonic stem cells. Coleman voted against the Stem Cell Research Act of 2007 that called for the expansion of research using stem cells derived from unused embryos from fertility clinics. According to a post on Sen. Coleman's Web site, he does not support federal funding for research that harms human embryos. (More Info)

Al FrankenAl Franken ANSWER OPTION: Federal funding should be used to expand embryonic stem cell research, even if that research uses viable human embryos.
CANDIDATE'S POSITION: In a written statement to MPR Franken said, "I support embryonic stem cell research. The blastocysts used for this potentially life-saving research contain only a few cells, and thousands are simply discarded by fertility clinics every year. A few of these blastocysts could be used instead to develop stem cell lines for potentially life-saving research. Given that the real choice is between using blastocysts for this purpose or throwing them away, their potential to save so many lives argues for allowing the government to fund and regulate this research. And by the way, I'd like to see this research happening at the University of Minnesota and the Mayo Clinic, not in Zurich or Tokyo. Once again, Minnesota can be at the forefront of the next wave of technology."