They seem to have discovered a way to get these cells without killing the embryo. In fact the process seems to be so similar to what is done already in genetic screening that its amazing that it hasn’t been done already. This may seem cynical, but I think that the scientists working on stem cell research wanted this controversy badly. It has almost no cost to them and has significant gains. First of all, these scientists get funding from liberal groups and states who ordinarily wouldn’t fund their medical research. Secondly, they get their names in the news and are universally praised by the people they care about. Finally they get to stick it to the pro-life crowd because on this issue they have the more sympathetic posititon. When you consider that the scientists who do research on this issue are selected against considering embryos a life it is obvious that they have no moral qualms about killing the embryos. But by now the situation has changed. They’ve got the money and the prestige and now they need the federal money. So some money is diverted to getting the stem cells without killing the embryo and voila it happens. It probably isn’t so simple as that, but it’s probably a close approximation.
Maybe Stem Cell Research isn’t so controversial.