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Via Keith Olbermann we're alerted that a number of Senators are boldly saving the nation from Dr. Moreau's infamous island of manimals and rogue mermaids the world over with the Brownback-Landrieu hybrid cloning ban. Proud sponsors and cosigners include Senators Jim Bunning (R-KY), Tom Coburn (R-OK), John Cornyn (R-TX), John Ensign (R-NV), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), James Inhofe (R-OK), John McCain (R-AZ), and David Vitter (R-LA) among others. What do you suppose the odds are one of those politicians happens to be diabetic?

In 1978, scientists at the Biotechnology Company Genentech cloned the gene for Human Insulin ...  After the human insulin gene was isolated from human tissue, it was chemically joined or 'spliced' to into a small bacterial chromosome called a plasmid. Once joined to this plasmid DNA, it essentially became just another piece of DNA in the bacterial chromosome. Every time the bacterial cell divides, it replicates its DNA, including replicating the human insulin gene ... The result: tons of bacteria making tons of human insulin!

Have any of these clowns ever even owned a science book? Geez, Coburn's an obstetrician, you'd think he'd have had to at least crack open and leaf through an anatomy and physiology text at some point. I guess technically E. coli is a bacterium, not an animal, and that would give the millions of diabetic constituents some leeway between using the unholy Humulin® union everyday to stay alive and becoming serial felons, but humanized insulin is just one notable example in a growing list of bioengineered drugs. And something tells me that Linnaean taxonomy or phylogeny weren't exactly determining factors for this histrionic crew.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Wed Jul 15, 2009 at 07:02 AM PDT.

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