The congressmen who represent this area split with Fourth District Congressman Ike Skelton voting to override the president and Seventh District Congressman Roy Blunt voting to sustain the veto.
During a speech earlier today in the East Room at the White House, President Bush explained the veto, which was his first in six years of office:
Like all Americans, I believe our nation must vigorously pursue the tremendous possibility that science offers to cure disease and improve the lives of millions. We have opportunities to discover cures and treatments that were unthinkable generations ago. Some scientists believe that one source of these cures might be embryonic stem cell research. Embryonic stem cells have the ability to grow into specialized adult tissues, and this may give them the potential to replace damaged or defective cells or body parts and treat a variety of diseases. Yet we must also remember that embryonic stem cells come from human embryos that are destroyed for their cells. Each of these human embryos is a unique human life with inherent dignity and matchless value.
The president's veto and the votes cast against the legislation by Sen. Jim Talent could play a big role in this year's election, as noted in a Washington Post article:
Democrats said voters will penalize GOP candidates for the demise of a popular measure, and predicted the issue could trigger the defeat of Bush allies such as Sen. James M. Talent, who faces a tough reelection battle in Missouri.
Undoubtedly, State Auditor Claire McCaskill will use this vote, as well as what appeared to be shifting statements by Talent on stem cell research, as campaign issues.