April 23, 2005
Gov. Janet Napolitano signed legislation Friday to ban the use of state funds for any sort of research on human cloning.
Rep. Bob Stump, R-Peoria, said that while it does not outlaw such research, it at least prohibits taxpayer dollars from being used — something he said would amount to the state giving its blessing to morally and scientifically questionable practices.
HB2221 was approved by the House and Senate largely along party lines, with most Republicans in favor and most Democrats opposed.
Stump said he believes it also bars cloning research at any of the state’s three universities.
He said just using school facilities would amount to tapping state funds.
Greg Fahey, lobbyist for the University of Arizona, said no university does this type of research, but any funding by outside sources could cover all costs, including overhead right down to the lighting bill.
Several legislators sought to limit the ban to reproductive cloning, where the aim is to create a human being.
That would have allowed therapeutic cloning where human cells are manipulated to create skin or organs.
But Stump said once that door is opened it is just a step away to trying to bring a clone to life.
Other bills signed by the governor Friday include:
• Requiring anyone who must register as a sex offender in the state where they were convicted to register within 10 days of moving to Arizona;
• Expanding the types of tests on newborns offered by the Arizona Department of Health Services to include checking for hereditary disorders;
• Allowing school boards to adopt policies about when parents should be called if police want to question a child.