MONDAY, March 6, 2006
Public testimony was presented in the Senate Judiciary Committee on SB 774.
SB 774 (sponsored by senator Bartle), is very significant legislation in light of the ethical issues surrounding human cloning and embryonic stem cell research. One of the big accusations that is thrown around in debates about embryonic stem cell research (human cloning), is that we are opposed to research, and helping people. But what is often left out of these debates, is the fact that there are two types of stem cells. Embryonic stem cells (which involves killing a tiny baby), and adult stem cells (found in many places in our bodies right now, which can be used without harming anyone). Another fact that the research companies tend to gloss over, is the fact that adult stem cells are currently responsible for over seventy- five applications and cures! SB 774 would provide funding for umbilical cord blood banks, one of the richest places to get adult stem cells.
We should remind people that we are not opposed to research and helping people, we are simply supporting the ethical applications that really work!
Find out more about how you can get involved in the fight against human cloning at:
MISSOURIANS AGAINST HUMAN CLONING
P.O. Box 967
Chesterfield, MO 63006
TUESDAY, March 7, 2006
In the Senate Education Committee Senator Rob Mayer introduced SB 983. His bill includes a mandated expenditure for in-classroom educational spending. Practically every lobbyist involved in any education issue was there to testify against this bill, talking about local control, as well as many other excusses why they donÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢t want to be accountable to provide efficient government schools. Of course this legislation (like so many others) is geared at simply helping kids to learn better. It is hoped that by increasing the amount of in-classroom spending we can help raise low test scores.
Schools receive funding through several sources, federal, state, and local. The new foundation formula that was passed last year changes the mandates for how these moneys are both spent and allocated. Many of the allocations already have mandatory in-classroom spending; 100% of the tobacco settlement money, and up to 75% of other moneys are already mandatory. So hereÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s the questionÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â¦ if 100%, and 75% of moneys are already being spent in the classrooms, then why are they getting so upset over only 65%?
The House Committee on Crime Prevention and Public Safety continued to work out the details on a House omnibus sex crimes bill. Included in this committee substitute; will be a form of ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‹Å“JessicaÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s LawÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢ (mandatory 25 year sentencing for rape), electronic monitoring, and many other important changes to how we punish sexual offences.
Meanwhile the full Senate perfected SB 588 which includes a dozen sex crime bills all rolled into one. After giving first round approval to SB 588, the bill was placed on the Third Read Calendar to wait for final approval before being sent to the House. (See Thursday)
Representative Peter Myers presented HB 1347 before the House Higher Education Committee. This legislation would require students at public institutions of higher education to take minimal American history and American literature courses. (Unlike SB 806, which seeks to protect our Christian heritage in elementary and secondary education by prohibiting censorship of the historical documents of our founding fathers, HB 1347 addresses college level political correctness and the common refusal to even acknowledge American history or the development of western civilization!)
WEDNESDAY, March 8, 2006
In the House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee Wednesday morning State Representative Will Kraus fought to keep an inclusive list of protected classes out of the state law regarding school bullying and harassment. HCS HB 1218 would require that schools adopt generic policies for dealing with bullying and harassment. These type policies work in basically the same way that a hate crimes law would work. If you are on the list (sex, race, age, etc.) then you are covered; but if you are not on the list, then you have no protection. The significance of this legislation is the fact that homosexuals have very proudly succeeded at including ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œsexual orientationÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â in practically every list of this type. Yes, that means ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œGay and Lesbian ClubsÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â that meet on school grounds have special protection and sanction from the school under many of these ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œbullying policiesÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â. We certainly do not advocate the harassment of these or any students specifically identified, but such policies do nothing for the kids who get picked on because they have glasses, freckles, big ears, or unpopular clothes. We need to help protect all of our children, and we need to STOP playing into the homosexual agenda in the process!
The House Children and Families Committee voted ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œdo passÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â HB 1539, the ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œHealth Care Professionals Rights of Conscience ActÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Å“ for a second time. Representative Brian Stevenson sponsored the bill but after passing the committee earlier, it was bumped back to the committee due to a procedural snafu. However, committee chairman Susan Philips led the panel to re-approve the bill so it can advance to the House Perfection Calendar soon.
THURSDAY, March 9, 2006
In the House Health Care Policy Committee there were two major pro-life bills. HB1444 (introduced by Representative Therese Sander), creates a specific statutory prohibition on the use of public funds to subsidize abortions. Also heard in Health Care Policy was HB1534. HB 1534, introduced by Representative Jim Limbke, is the House version for funding umbilical cord blood banks (see Monday). Funding proposals like this are a major investment in a culture of life for the state of Missouri.
The Senate Ways and Means Committee allowed consideration of Senator Delbert ScottÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s bill designed to limit casinos in Missouri. SB 577 would limit the number of Casino licenses that the Gaming Commission could issue. Not only would the bill prohibit excess numbers of casinos but would only allow replacement licenses to be authorized in the same locations as those already in existence. This formula would provide additional protections against any casinos from being established in Branson or other areas of the state currently casino free.
The full Senate voted to pass SS SCS SB 588 (Senate Substitute for Senate Committee Substitute for Senate Bill 588 ). This is the Senate version of the omnibus sex crimes bill. With this vote to clear the third read calendar, SB 588 now heads to the House where it will be assigned to a legislative committee.