Rassmussen reports stunning reversal: 57% of voters oppose taxpayer funded embryonic stem cell research

I was on a conference call Wednesday re: a federal judge’s decision earlier in the week that the Obama administration broke the law by authorizing federal funding of embryonic stem cell research.

Someone on the call mentioned Democrats are excited to make escr a rallying cry for autumn, thinking finally they have an election issue the public supports. Indeed, according to Science Insider, Democrat pro-death ringleader Rep. Diana DeGette is mulling several options.

But I wondered to myself whether the public is indeed still so supportive of taxpayer-funded escr. Times have changed. Everyone is now concerned with out-of-control government spending. How well will a call for more spending go?

And it has been 6 years since Californians foolishly approved Prop 71, providing $3 billion of their state taxes (borrowed, actually) for escr. What has the “vast promise” of escr netted since then? Nothing.

So today Rasmussen released findings from a new poll that is sure to make Democrats want to slit their wrists. My hunch was right. Support for taxpayer funded escr has waned – and considerably:

Only 33% of U.S. voters believe that taxpayer money should be spent on embryonic stem cell research, according to a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey.

Fifty-seven percent (57%) say funding for such research should be left to the private sector.

Key word: “voters.”Support for taxpayer-funded escr has plunged by 19% in only 17 months. The numbers have almost reversed:

In March of last year, 52% of all voters agreed with President Obama’s decision to lift the ban on federal funding of embryonic stem cell research, but 38% were opposed.

We shall see if these new poll numbers cause Dems to back away. I’m not confident. Ever since getting all the power almost 2 years ago Democrats have been unable to resist political poison.

28 thoughts on “Rassmussen reports stunning reversal: 57% of voters oppose taxpayer funded embryonic stem cell research”

  1. I love this argument. Anti-choicers screaming “I told you so…” while never quite getting the point that we wouldn’t know ANYTHING about stem cells had it not been for all the embryonic stem cell research that was done over seas. We would have got to adult stem cells research even sooner if all the embryonic research could have been done in the USA. Just a few more jobs farmed out to other countries…

    To be clear, there would be no adult stem cell research without the embryonic stem cell research that came first… Thanks for slowing down science once again, but that’s what religion has been doing since the very beginning of science itself. I wonder how many lives were lost while you “Pro-Life” people blocked the research of the medicines that could have saved them… I wonder how many babies they would have had if they had lived long enough to become parents… I wonder how many children are missing parents or how many parents are missing children that could have been saved had the Christian Right and the anti-choice movement kept their noses in their own business instead of playing political games with other people’s lives…
    Still feel like you won some kind of victory?

  2. OMG! Is that a picture of a small group of embryonic cells… Oh look its little arms are waving at me… lol Thank you for illustrating the Pro-choice view on human embryos… just a tiny clump of cells. Look there it is, I wonder where its face is going to be much further along in the pregnancy. Too bad it’s just a tiny clump of cells so we can’t tell where the face would have been or if it would have been a boy or girl… It’s hard to tell when they are JUST A TINY CLUMP OF CELLS!!!

  3. @Biggz: Are you afraid because your side is losing?
    I mean, why else do you come here and express your views in such an, uh, eloquent fashion? You’d be foolish if you thought you were going to get us to switch sides.
    A fear reaction is the only thing I can think of. Hate triggered by fear.

  4. Two quick points:
    – Pollster rankings show quite strongly that Rasmussen polls are slightly more worthwhile than junk.
    – Fun to see a website that claims to be strong into the sanctity of life say that a poll makes people want to “slit their wrists”.  Seems to be a bit in poor taste.

  5. Great one liner from comediene Bonnie Mc Farlane:

    “I don’t know why I try to talk about politics publicly when I have no idea what I am talking about. I feel like I should be auditioning for ‘The View’.”

  6. Ex-GOP Voter  August 27th, 2010 at 8:47 pm
    “Fun to see a website that claims to be strong into the sanctity of life say that a poll makes people want to “slit their wrists”.  Seems to be a bit in poor taste.”


    ex RINO,

    Far be it from me to comment on ‘taste’, good or bad, but your comment is revealing.

    The ‘posters’ observation that the poll results concerning escr might be emotionally disturbing to already emotionally disturbed people is not an endorsement or an encouragement for them to harm themselves.

    The loons of the left need no such encouragement. They are constantly doing things that brings injury to themselves.

    It is their ‘right’ as they have so frequently reminded us.

    They have chosen death and destruction. They have made their bed.

    They have demanded that they be allowed to wallow in it with no protest or intervention by another living soul or spirit.

    Politics makes strange bedfellows and bedfellows strange.

    The liberal/humanists have made their bed and chosen their bedfellows strange.

    We shall wait and see what kind of fruit is produced.

  7. Ken – so if it is somebody you don’t agree with, joking about their death is okay?  I suppose I’m not getting you.  Your idea is confusing – I think we need an abort it.

  8. Littlez,
    Adult stem cells have been in use decades longer than their embryonic counterparts. Strike One.
    “Thanks for slowing down science once again, but that’s what religion has been doing since the very beginning of science itself.”
    Actually, the Catholic Church founded the university system and has been a major patron and champion of science all along, your ignorance notwithstanding.  Strike two.

    “I wonder how many lives were lost while you “Pro-Life” people blocked the research of the medicines that could have saved them”

    Actually, embryonic stem cells have caused tumors in every animal model tried, while the pro-aborts have been successful at funneling BILLIONS of dollars away from the highly successful adult stem cells which have none of the instability of ESC’s.  Strike Three.
    Don’t you get it that you can’t beat me or the other medical professionals and well-read pro-lifers when it comes to the factual evidence? Who do you think you’re fooling here? You come off as a craven ignoramus. Yet you return with one untruth after another.
    Your batting average since you showed up here is a stunning 0.00! Don’t you even get mildly embarrassed by how wrong you seem to be?

  9. Gerry,

    Great to see you back on here and commenting! Once again you knock one out of the park for life. :-)

  10. It seems rather simple.  The issue, as with Obama, was always public ignorance.  The public until recently has been generally unaware of the recent developments in adult skin cells, that they can be manipulated to act like embryonic stem cells, but perhaps with even more research potential.  The new studies coming out are showing that the uncontroversial adult skin cells are yielding the research results everyone once assumed would come only from embryonic stem cells, while the embryonic stem cell research is yielding little if anything at all.
    The public was unaware of this before, just as they were once unfamiliar with Obama and made the huge mistake of voting for him, but thanks to efforts by the National Right to Life Committee, they are realizing how controversial, useless, and unnecessary embryonic stem cell research truly is.  The NRLC actually put out an email just a few days ago with an article by Dave Andrusko about the recent court decision stopping embryonic stem cell research, that states, “In fact, to date there are over 70 published studies that show promising results utilizing morally unobjectionable adult stem cell research versus none with ESC.”
    A recent article by NewsWeek shows the information about this subject is finally making its way, ever so slowly, through the liberal mainstream media (ironically FOX does the same thing the rest of the media does, just for the other side of the aisle, but at least is honest and blatant about it).  And as people realize what is actually going on, their mistrust for Obama and the LIBERAL Democrats (let us not forget the pro-life ones) on this issue as so many already will continue to grow.
    It is becoming more plain to them this was never about research, but an unnecessary and controversial step in the wrong direction, using research for a useless method instead of a profitable one, merely to score points on a long-treasured key liberal agenda and perhaps in the process try to cement abortion in public law.

  11. Obama, Pelosi, and Reid are running scared.  What they, and the entire Democrat party, failed to realize when trying to ram their liberal agendas over the will of the American people, is that this is inherently a socially conservative and pro-life nation.
    Yes, Americans got frustrated with George Bush because of Iraq and wasteful spending (though military, not so much domestic).  But when they voted in Democrats, they voted in conservative Democrats.  Hence the sudden rise in the Democrats for Life of America (DFLA), the group of pro-life Democrats in Congress.  They had a bunch of new members who won running on pro-life platforms.  A number are also in the Blue Dog Democrats, the fiscally conservative branch of Democrats in Congress (though they consider this to mean opposing free trade, tax cuts for the wealthy, and deregulation, unlike Republicans).  At any rate, Democrats found themselves unable to pass bills through Congress because of all the new conservative Democrats emerging from the woodwork.  Americans did not stop being conservative.  Frustrated with Republicans, they merely elected conservative Democrats.
    What is more, I can prove we are a socially conservative nation using major polls.  On abortion?  Check Gallup.

    According to Gallup polling on abortion, even at the height of Roe v. Wade popularity in 1992, never has more than 34% of the public said abortion should be legal under any circumstance.  Currently that number is at 24% and has not exceeded 30% since 1995.  Rather, the nation’s typical response is ‘legal only under certain circumstances’, e.g. rape, incest, and life of the mother.  Between 48 and 61% choose this option every single year.  Currently that number is at 21%.  And that is in addition to the 12-23% each year who say abortion should be illegal under all circumstances.  Currently 19% agree with abortion being illegal under all circumstances.
    In other words, most Americans, to a tune of around 70%, support abortion only in certain circumstances, or not at all.  If you check page 2 of the results, you will see some very interesting polling facts revealing this truly is where Americans stand:

    * According to two separate 2003 polls, A & B, 78.5% of Americans agree with abortion when the mother’s life is endangered, 70.5% when the pregnancy results from rape or incest, 54% when the child would be born with a life-threatening illness, 44% when the child would be born mentally disabled, yet only 32.5% of Americans support abortion when the mother does not want the child for any reason (which by the way is the reason overwhelmingly provided women give for having abortions when polled).

    * According to 3 polls between 1996 and 2003, Americans when asked whether each situation should be legal or illegal, 84-88% said abortion should be legal when the mother’s life is endangered, 77-82% said legal when the mother’s physical health is endangered, 76-78% agreed abortion should be legal if the pregnancy resulted from rape or incest, 63-66% said legal when the woman’s mental health is endangered, 53-56% said legal when the child would be born physically impaired, 53-55% if mentally impaired, but only 32-35% said legal if the woman or family can’t afford to raise the child (presumably adoption then would be the preferred alternative?).

    * Between 69 and 74% of Americans agree with the NRLC that women under 18 should need parental consent for abortions, based on 4 polls between 1992 and 2005.
    Between 64 and 73% of Americans agree with the NRLC that the husband of a married woman should be notified if she decides to have an abortion, based on 4 polls between 1992 and 2005.

    * 64-66% said abortion should be legal in the first trimester (3 month period) of pregnancy, yet just 24-26% said it should be legal in the 2nd trimester, and only 8-13% said legal in the 3rd trimester, according to 3 polls taken from 1996-2003.  Nevertheless, “over 100,000 abortions occur each year in the U.S. after the first trimester.

    * 73-78% of Americans agreed with making a law requiring women to wait 24 hours before having an abortion, and 86-88% with using a law to require doctors to inform patients of abortion alternatives before performing abortions, according to 3 polls taken from 1996 to 2003.

    As such, it is very plain that aside from a radical fringe consisting of about 30% of Americans, Americans overwhelmingly support abortion only in cases of rape, incest, or life/health of the mother, and most definitely not when the mother doesn’t want the child for any reason, including financial concerns.  Polls that ask whether abortion should always be legal or always be illegal will of course result in flawed results, since the answer is of course ‘only under certain circumstances’.
    Furthermore, according to a massive decades-long study by the Pew Research Center which every half decade or so analyzes Americans on issues and demographics, Americans were revealed to be overwhelmingly socially conservative.  According to the 2005 report, “Beyond Red vs. Blue“, it can be seen that:

    * 74% of Americans support public display of the 10 commandments, with just 22% opposed.

    * 61% of Americans oppose gay marriage, with just 32% supporting.

    * 57% of Americans support teaching Creationism ALONG WITH Evolution, with just 33% opposed.  However, the results reverse when the question is worded, “Would you favor or oppose teaching creationism INSTEAD OF evolution in public schools?”, with 54% opposed to just 33% supporting.  As such, polls using the 2nd wording without the first will be flawed.


  12. Biggz,

    You should really be embarassed that American citizens have had to travel to Thailand and China to obtain adult stem cell treatment. Countries like Portugal, S.Korea, and the previously mentioned are leaving us in the dust while we stay stuck in the stone age with our fixation on embryonic stem cell research.

    The PC side has again lost the moral upperhand, as they did with fetal tissue transplants which, despite all the hype, failed miserably to live up to the anyone’s expectation of miracle cures.

    Again the sick, terminally ill, and disabled are having their hopes exploited and dashed with ESCs, while proven ASC therapies sit on the wayside.  We should be putting every dime and ounce of energy we have into ASC research.

  13. Biggz,

    The first human embryonic stem cells were isolated in 1998 independently by James Thompson of the University of Wisconsin, Madison and John Gearhart of Johns Hopkins University. Gearhart come to my school a couple years ago and I heard him talk about this firsthand. However, bone marrow transplants are an example of using adult stem cells to help people. As you know, bone marrow transplants have been around well before 1998, so your claim that embryonic stem cell research lead to adult stem cell research is simply incorrect.

    I have no reason to believe that you have ever studied either the science or any of the particulars about stem cell research. Please take the time to learn a little bit about what you are talking about before you form a strong opinion that you wish to share with others. It is embarrassing to you, and frankly insulting to all of us who have spent countless hours research and contemplating these issues carefully from all sides.

  14. Joshua –
    Great post – nice to see somebody pull actual stats.
    One major stat you didn’t pull though – the actual votes in South Dakota and Colorado.
    There seems to be a big gap between what people say they are, and what they want the law to actually say.

  15. Ex-GOP Voter  August 27th, 2010 at 9:37 pm 

    “Ken – so if it is somebody you don’t agree with, joking about their death is okay?  I suppose I’m not getting you.  Your idea is confusing – I think we need an abort it.”


     Amateur ghost hunter looking for ‘ghost train’ hit and killed by real


    Reminds me of the story about the animal rights wacko who climbed into the polar baar exhibit at the zoo. The result was about the same as the fellow above who encountered the real train.

    “Democratic Rep. Bobby Bright (Ala.) on Wednesday ducked a question on whether or not he would vote for Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) by joking that she “might even get sick and die.”



    I believe you are inferring something that the writer did not do. I saw no gesting or joking that ha, ha, [hopefully] the liberal response to this news will be to  ‘choice’ themnselves.

    Your reaction says more about your view of conservatives and pro-lifers than it does of the conservatives and pro-lifers.

  16. ExRINO


    Humans are stupid.

    ‘The bible does identify stupidity as sin, but it does frown on it.’
    William F. Buckley

    Prov 14:7-9  7 Go from the presence of a foolish and self-confident man, for you will not find knowledge on his lips.
    8 The Wisdom [godly Wisdom, which is comprehensive insight into the ways and purposes of God] of the prudent is to understand his way, but the folly of [self-confident] fools is to deceive.
    9 Fools make a mockery of sin and sin mocks the fools [who are its victims; a sin offering made by them only mocks them, bringing them disappointment and disfavor], but among the upright there is the favor of God. [Prov 10:23.]  AMP

    Prov 1:32 For the backsliding of the simple shall slay them, and the careless ease of [self-confident] fools shall destroy them. [Isa 32:6.]  AMP

    Prov 10:21  The lips of the [uncompromisingly] righteous feed and guide many, but fools die for want of understanding and heart.  AMP

    Prov 13:19   Satisfied desire is sweet to a person; therefore it is hateful and exceedingly offensive to [self-confident] fools to give up evil [upon which they have set their hearts]. AMP

    Prov 13:20  He who walks [as a companion] with wise men is wise, but he who associates with [self-confident] fools is [a fool himself and] shall smart for it. [Isa 32:6.]  AMP

    Prov 16:22  Understanding is a wellspring of life to those who have it, but to give instruction to fools is folly.  AMP

    Prov 26:4-5  4 Answer not a [self-confident] fool according to his folly, lest you also be like him.
    5 Answer a [self-confident] fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own eyes and conceit. [Matt 16:1-4; 21:24-27.]  AMP  [Which is it? 4 or 5?]

    Prov 19:19  A man of great wrath shall suffer the penalty; for if you deliver him [from the consequences], he will [feel free to] cause you to do it again.  AMP

    I believe the same can be said of fools.

    When you see a fool approaching, while he is still far off, plot a different course before your paths intersect. If you meet the fool’s folly may splash onto you.

    Avoid the presence of a fool.

  17. @biggz

    I find your posts (the last two posts anyways) to be quite uninformed on the history of science, the history of stem cell research and the views of the pro-life community.

    First of all, it is only the pro-choice parties who insist that because the embryo only looks like a clump of cells that we should treat them as less than human. The pro-life parties KNOW that the embryo looks like a clump of cells only, but they also know that with the support of the mother’s reproductive system these clump of cells eventually form into a fully recognizable baby. The thing is, the different stages of development assigned to a growing embryo/fetus are only designated to facilitate study, NOT to designate the embryo/fetus’ humanity.

    Secondly, scientists have known about stem cells since the early 1900’s with the discovery of stem cell progenitors of the different blood cells in blood marrow. These lead to our increased knowledge on the causes and treatment of such diseases as leukemia, lymphomas, and others. Since then, our knowledge on adult stem cells have increased, WITHOUT the contribution of embryonic stem cell research as we know it today. In fact, embryonic stem cells were only first grown in laboratory settings in 1998 by James Thomson, a scientist at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. And another fact: adult stem cell treatments have been successful for many diseases. Embryonic stem cell treatments? None.

    Thirdly, well, maybe you’re right, religion may have slowed down science…in fact, every other religion EXCEPT Christianity. Science emerged as we know it today because of Christendom’s endorsement of it, especially considering what the Scriptures tell about the universe: “But Thou hast ordered all things in measure, and number, and weight” (Wisdom 11:20; Wisdom 11:21 in older Catholic Bible translations). That is, the universe is orderly, mathematical, and thus able to be studied.

    It is good to study your history first.

  18. Anybody else remember when James Kelly tried to tell Christopher Reeve about European advancements in using adult stem cells to treat spinal cord injuries and someone actually put their hand over his mouth so he couldn’t continue?

  19. Hey Marauder, I remember Dr. Oz telling Michael J. Fox and Oprah that “the real cures were going to come from adult stem cell research not the embryonic stem cells”. Both of them totally looked at him like he was out of his mind, they did NOT want to hear what he had to say. 

  20. Jill,
    I do think that the word on ESC’s is getting out and people realize that they’ve been had. But I also believe that the shift may well have to do with the overall displeasure with BO’s ruinous spending that has done nothing to alleviate the economic crisis.

  21. Jill, I agree, as a mental health advocate, that your ‘slit their wrists’ comment was a bit over the top & insensitive to those with a mental illness, who experience very real emotional pain & self-injure. Please consider re-wording that section.

  22. Biggz, science & embryologist recognize fertilization of the human egg as the beginning of a new human organism. Although it may not look like much, that mass of cells is the beginning of a new human organism & contains the complete DNA of & instructions to develop into the human being which you & I recognize. Also, the blastocyst/embryo we are looking at is only 2-3 days after fertilization, wherein by the time most women find out they are pregnant, the embryo is 2-4 weeks post fertilization (4-6 weeks LMP) & is already much more developed & even has recognizable human features.

  23. I wouldn’t say that Ras’s polls are junk, but they do lean Republican.

    It would be interesting to see what other polls on the subject say.

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