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California Supreme Court turns down stem cell research case

[JURIST] The California Supreme Court [official website] denied review [materials] of a lower court ruling Wednesday, effectively allowing the continuation of a state-sponsored program for stem cell research [JURIST news archive] operated by the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine [official website]. A California state appeals court upheld [JURIST report; opinion, PDF] the validity of the program in February, writing that it "suffers from no constitutional or other legal infirmity." Commenting on the Supreme Court's action, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger [official website] said [press release]:

Today's action by the California Supreme Court is a victory for our state because potentially life-saving science can continue without a shadow of legal doubt. This decision reaffirms voters' will to keep California on the forefront of embryonic stem cell research. California's leadership gives the best promise of finding a cure for deadly and debilitating diseases.
The research program, known as Proposition 71 [CA AG summary, PDF], was approved [JURIST report] in a 2004 state referendum by a 59 percent margin.

The lawsuit against the program [JURIST report] was brought by the California Family Bioethics Council and two anti-tax organizations - the People's Advocate and the National Tax Limitation Foundation [advocacy websites]. The trial court determined [JURIST report] that the stem cell program was being administered with sufficient state control and did not violate ballot initiative or conflicts of interest rules. AP has more.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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