Tuesday, June 08, 2004

CNN and Money magazine report that right-wingers are working to put Reagan's face on dimes, $10 bills, and $20 bills. These are separate proposals -- the idea isn't to put the Gipper on all three at once, although I suspect his fans wouldn't object to that. "Democrats in Congress may not be ready to embrace the idea, though none has publicly declared opposition after Reagan's death Saturday," we're told.

Look, Democrats -- this is a no-brainer.

A majority of senators -- 58 out of 100, including some Republicans -- have asked President Bush to ease restrictions on stem-cell research. Nancy Reagan wants this to happen.

It won't happen. This is the Bush administration we're talking about -- one of the Bushies' core beliefs is "no enemies on the right." They'll wait out this period of focus on Reagan; to appease the Religios Right, they'll refuse to budge on this issue, even as they sing Reagan's praises. If they're returned to office, this issue won't be revisited for another four years.

So if I were a Democrat in Congress, my position would be: Ease the restrictions on stem-cell research; until that's done, no changes to the money.

That should be every Democrat's position.

Voters will get it. The money question is pure symbolism -- a $10 bill is a $10 bill whether the picture on the front is of Alexander Hamilton or Donald Duck. Stem-cell research, on the other hand, is about human lives and human suffering.

Democrats, please -- make the Republicans show which is a higher priorirty for them: easing human suffering or aggrandizing one of their own.

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