We have until January
Legislation to expand federally funded embryonic stem cell research will not come to a vote in the Senate until early next year, one of the sponsors, Senator Arlen Specter, said yesterday. Specter, a Pennsylvania Republican, told the chamber that Senate majority leader Bill Frist has agreed to scheduling a vote on the stem cell legislation then. Specter said he had decided against attaching it to a bill now before the Senate to fund the Labor and Health and Human Services departments, noting it would cause a ''multifaceted controversy."
This was after The American Spectator hinted that Bush may have sold out on the ES cell policy in order to guarantee Specter's vote for Miers.
What a huge mess. Paul notes that if Bush had only nominated someone better qualified, he wouldn't be in the position of having to buy off Specter. The same could be said if only the social conservatives had thrown their weight totally behind Toomey in the PA primary.
So now what? Do we have a President who is still behind us? Will he still use the veto to override any legislation that the Senate may pass? Can he afford to anymore?
70% of people support ES cell research out there. Those will be hard numbers to ignore. Bush's initial compromise was bad enough, does he have the will not to do it again? Will he have any political capital left to fight this battle with? Will he really care to fight it?