I think that the people who are opposed to this research are being misled by inaccurate terms, misinformation, and propaganda. Last week, Newsweek's Jonathan Alter published a fabulous essay entitled "The 'Pro-Cure' Movement". This is a must-read, informative article which stated the case for stem cell research brilliantly.
"It's simple enough," says Atler, "reproductive cloning (to create Frankensteins), no; embryonic-stem-cell research (to cure diseases), yes." That basic summation statement needs to be pushed into voters' minds, because it's one that most people can agree with.
Alter also exposed a hole in the conservatives' strategy of tying stem cell research with abortion:
The stem-cell debate has been linked to abortion, as if depriving science of the use of these cells somehow extends "the culture of life." But here the "pro-life" position should argue for therapeutic research. Under Bush's stem-cell policy, 400,000 surplus blastocysts at fertility clinics are eventually thrown in the trash instead of a few thousand being used to enhance life. To be intellectually coherent, Bush would have to shut down all in vitro clinics, depriving millions of infertile couples of the chance for a child. Fat chance.
Also, in backing up my claim above that this is an issue that does not fall along partisan lines, Alter also cited a survey conducted by the Republican Main Street Partnership that found "support for stem-cell research even in very conservative districts" (emphasis added). Now that's encouraging news! Perhaps there's still room for optimism in hoping this debate reaches the right outcome.