Wisconsin Governor Candidate Flips On Stem Cells

Robin Marty

Republican Scott Walker now won't say he would ban embryonic stem cell research even after promising Pro-Life Wisconsin.

It’s a near certainty that choice will play a key role in the Wisconsin governor’s race.  But is Republican anti-choice candidate Scott Walker trying to reign back his rigid anti-abortion reputation in order to appeal to a wider population?

Via WTOP.com:

The Republican candidate for Wisconsin governor, Scott Walker, refused to say Tuesday whether he favors a ban on embryonic stem cell research – even though he previously told an anti-abortion group he does.

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During a Tuesday campaign stop in Madison, Walker said he would direct state money to stem cell research that doesn’t use cells obtained from embryos.

However, many researchers believe embryonic stem cells hold the most promise because they can morph into any type of cell and potentially be used to cure diseases like Parkinson’s, diabetes and spinal cord injuries.

When repeatedly asked whether he would support an outright ban on embryonic stem cell research, Walker avoided a direct answer.

According to Pro-Life Wisconsin, which endorsed both Walker and his primary opponent Mark Neumann, Walker did say he would ban the research.  Also from the WTOP article:

Matt Sande, political action committee director for Pro-Life Wisconsin, said Walker previously told his group he supports a ban. That’s one reason Walker received a 100 percent rating from the group, Sande said.

Walker’s hedging appears to be based on a hard-hitting commercial that accuses him of wanting to ban stem cell research in the state.

The ad features a mother talking to the camera about her son, who has juvenile diabetes. She describes how stem cell research “gives our family hope, hope for a cure,” and she continues with a blunt declaration:

“Scott Walker says he would ban stem cell research in Wisconsin. That’s right, ban it.” 

Walker is currently leading Barrett by 6 points in the latest Rasmussen Poll.

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