President Joe Biden’s administration has reversed former President Donald Trump’s ban on using aborted fetal tissue for taxpayer-funded research.
The National Institutes of Health made the announcement on Friday after health secretary Xavier Becerra said Thursday that he opposed the Trump administration rules restricting the use of aborted fetal tissue, The Washington Post reported.
“We believe that we have to do the research it takes to make sure that we are incorporating innovation and getting all of those types of treatments and therapies out there to the American people,” Becerra said.
Under Trump’s watch, the Department of Health and Human Services conducted a nine-month review of government-funded research involving fetal tissue from elective abortions.
In July 2019, HHS banned the NIH’s internal research team from using fetal tissue and installed ethics boards to oversee all federally funded research.
Two dozen members of Congress had written to Becerra urging the change earlier this week. The restrictions were “politically motivated and unnecessary,” they wrote.
The tissue of aborted fetuses is used in research looking for cures and treatments for afflictions including Alzheimer’s disease, spinal cord injury and HIV, but some argue the practice is unethical.
Pro-life advocates condemned the move.
Susan B. Anthony List president Marjorie Dannenfelser accused the Biden administration of “moving rapidly to pay back their abortion industry allies and wipe out pro-life progress made under the Trump-Pence administration.”
SICK: Pro-Abortion HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra is leading a push to ramp up experiments using body parts taken from babies killed by abortions — and forcing taxpayers to be complicit
— Susan B. Anthony List (@SBAList) April 16, 2021
“From day one they have sought to expand abortion on demand, funded by taxpayers, against the will of the strong majority of Americans,” Dannenfelser said in a statement.
“Now they would force Americans to be complicit in barbaric experiments using body parts harvested from innocent children killed in abortions, with no limits of any kind.”
Dr. Tara Sander Lee of the Charlotte Lozier Institute, the SBAL’s research arm, said the decision defies “both the best ethics and most promising science,” noting that “fetal tissue was not, and has never been, used for polio or any other vaccine, nor to produce or manufacture any pharmaceutical.”
“There are superior and ethical alternatives available such as adult stem cell models being used by countless scientists worldwide to develop and produce advanced medicines treating patients now, without exploitation of any innocent life,” Lee said.
“All scientists should reject the administration’s attempts to … advance the practice of harvesting fetal tissue.”
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