Obama May Move Quickly on ESCR, Etc.
President-elect Barack Obama is poised to move swiftly to reverse actions that President Bush took using executive authority, and his transition team is reviewing limits on stem cell research and the expansion of oil and gas drilling, among other issues, members of the team said Sunday.
“There’s a lot that the president can do using his executive authority without waiting for Congressional action, and I think we’ll see the president do that,” John D. Podesta, a top transition leader, said Sunday. “He feels like he has a real mandate for change. We need to get off the course that the Bush administration has set.”
“I think across the board, on stem cell research, on a number of areas,” Mr. Podesta said on “Fox News Sunday,” “you see the Bush administration even today moving aggressively to do things that I think are probably not in the interest of the country…”
Mr. Bush used his first prime-time address, on Aug. 9, 2001, to announce his decision (technically a policy pronouncement and not an executive order) to permit federal financing for human embryonic stem cell research, albeit with strict limitations. Scientists and patient advocates have spent years pressing him to loosen the restrictions; Mr. Bush has twice vetoed legislation that would have done so.
“It will have been eight years that we have been operating in a limited funding environment,” said Larry Soler, a board member of the Coalition for the Advancement of Medical Research, an umbrella group representing 100 organizations. “I think everyone in the scientific community and the patient community is geared up and expecting this and excited to make this happen. It’s been a long struggle.”
More. Fans of Naomi Klein may also be interested in this quote by Barack Obama’s new Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel:
“Rule one: Never allow a crisis to go to waste,” Mr. Emanuel said in an interview on Sunday. “They are opportunities to do big things.”
Who knew that Emanuel was such a devotee of Milton Friedman?
(HT: Julian Sanchez)
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