Judge Rejects Stem Cell Injunction Motion

WASHINGTON, Sept. 7 (UPI) — A federal judge Tuesday rejected a U.S. Justice Department motion to lift an injunction barring federal funding of human embryonic stem cell research.

Chief District Judge Royce C. Lamberth of the District of Columbia ruled Aug. 23 an executive order issued in 2009 by President Barack Obama violated a ban on the use of federal funds to destroy embryos. Lamberth Tuesday rejected an administration appeal to lift the injunction he issued last month, pending an appeal of the ruling, The Washington Post reported.

Lamberth suggested in Tuesday’s ruling the Obama administration, in its motion, overstated the restrictive nature of his August finding, the newspaper said.

“Defendants are incorrect about much of their ‘parade of horribles’ that will supposedly result from this court’s preliminary injunction,” Lamberth wrote.

The judge said the injunction did not necessarily cover research that had previously been funded during the administration of former President George W. Bush, nor to research that had previously been “awarded and funded,” the Post reported.

Lisa Hughes, president of the Coalition for the Advancement of Medical Research, said the organization was disappointed by Lamberth’s latest ruling.

“CAMR’s primary goal is to permanently restore embryonic stem cell research freedom as it existed before Aug. 23, 2010,” Hughes said in a statement.

The Justice Department is expected to appeal Tuesday’s ruling, the newspaper said.

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