You see, I believe that life begins at conception and that a human embryo is human life. I believe it is morally wrong to create human life to destroy it for research. And I believe it is morally wrong to take the tax dollars of millions of pro-life Americans, who believe that life is sacred, and use it to fund the destruction of human embryos for research. This debate then tonight is not really about what an embryo is. This debate is about who we are as a nation and whether we respect fully half of our country.
Howey contrasts Pence's view with those of his opponent Barry Welsh. Quoting Welsh, Howey writes:
Barry Welsh is a pastor at the Laurel United Methodist Church near Rushville and is also the Democrat running against Rep. Pence. Rev. Welsh explained, "Tens of thousands of unneeded embryos are discarded as hospital waste each year. HOSPITAL WASTE. President Bush surrounded himself with children who were produced outside of a woman's body by science, and God bless each of them, but they would have been created in the petri dish regardless. That was shameful of President Bush to try to deceive us with that staged announcement."
Welsh continued, "The question is actually, should these embryos be used to find solutions to ailments, or be hospital waste, as they are now. President Bush chose hospital waste. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, a doctor, voted for research because he knew it would lead to cures, he is a smart man, and I would have voted the same way. President Bush, not a doctor, makes a medical decision with this veto that once again shows why he and his supporters have a disapproval rating of over 60 percent. As someone that has experienced family members with Alzheimer's, which also struck Ronald Reagan down, and other cruel diseases that could be cured from this research, I find it disturbing that President Bush chose this time to use the first veto of his Presidency."
I suspect that far more people in Pence's district side with Welsh's more practical and compassionate position, particularly those with family members suffering from any number of medical malodies for which the reseach could provide breakthough treatments.