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Senate Will Debate Stem Cell Research

Supporters of Funding Bill Say It Will Pass; Some Lawmakers Expect Presidential Veto

Veto Threat continued...

Another would open federal funding for experimental methods of extracting stem cells without damaging embryos.

Researchers testified on Capitol Hill earlier this month that alternative extraction methods remain theoretical, but that the techniques are worth pursuing.

The bill could offer lawmakers -- and the president -- a way to support some stem cell research popular with voters without violating their vows not to support studies that harm embryos, says Rep. Phil Gingrey, (R-Ga.), who supports the alternative measure but opposes the embryonic stem cell research bill.

Gingrey tells WebMD that he and other conservatives are "counting on" President Bush to veto the expansion of research that destroys embryos, even if the decision causes political trouble for Republicans in this year's elections.

"I think it definitely could be a political liability if we didn't have the other bill as an alternative," says Gingrey, who is a doctor.

The Senate is expected to vote on all three bills on Tuesday evening.

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