John Danforth's very strange support of candidate Ed Martin
The Kansas City Star
What the heck is John Danforth doing?
From the St. Louis Beacon comes word that the former U.S. senator will headline a fundraiser for Ed Martin, the Republican who is challenging Democrat Chris Koster for the Missouri attorney general seat.
Danforth took a bold stand six or seven years ago when Missouri was in the throes of the stem cell wars. He was honorary chairman of the Missouri Coalition for Lifesaving Cures, the group campaigning for scientists in Missouri to have the same rights as researchers elsewhere to pursue medical discoveries.
In a 2005 oped piece written in the New York Times, Danforth said,
It is not evident to many of us that cells in a petri dish are equivalent to identifiable people suffering from terrible diseases. I am and have always been pro-life. But the only explanation for legislators comparing cells in a petri dish to babies in the womb is the extension of religious doctrine into statutory law.
Martin, on the other hand, in those years headed up Missouri Roundtable for Life, a virulent anti-science organization which filed unsuccessful attempts at 30 ballot initiatives in a two-year span, all aimed at discouraging stem cell research. Martin’s group also filed a slew of lawsuits, to the same end. Martin still refers to scientists involved in embryonic stem cell research as “cloners.”
Lest we forget, Martin served an eventful 15 months as former Gov. Matt Blunt’s chief of staff before being shown the door. Among other things, Martin deleted government e-mails, claiming they didn’t count as public records. He insulted the state’s judges. And he was in the thick of a fiasco in which the governor’s office pressured the state Highway Patrol to publicly criticize they-attorney general Jay Nixon.
This is not the guy we want in the attorney general’s office. The very thought should make Danforth shudder. But apparently not.