Barack Obama Executive Order 13505, November 2008
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On 20 November 2009 Democrat Barack Obama replaced Republican George W. Bush as president of the United States. Obama soon initiated changes to Bush's 2001 executive order concerning scientific research involving human stem cells. Stem cell research remains a controversial issue in the US. Some individuals consider it immoral to experiment with an embryo because they regard embryos as human beings from the moment of conception, while others believe stem cell research could lead to great scientific advancements. Congress has not passed any legislation on stem cell research, leaving it open to the president to make policy through executive orders. On 9 March 2009, Obama signed Executive Order 13505 to expand experimentation on stem cells. This overturned Executive Order 13435, which was signed by George W. Bush to limit the potential research that could be done on embryonic stem cells.