WisDems: Tommy Thompson Must Reveal Stem Cell Financial Interests

Nov 09, 2011

MADISON – After his self-serving turn at the Vatican this week, Wisconsin Democrats called on Washington lobbyist Tommy Thompson to reveal his financial ties to biotechnology firms that would reap financial benefit from Thompson’s proposal to invest federal dollars in adult stem cell research.  

Thompson, a former advocate for medical innovation in Wisconsin, has abandoned his past support for embryonic stem cell research and taken a hard-right turn to garner the support of TEA party radicals.  Thompson now wants to focus solely on promoting adult stem cell research, an industry in which Thompson has held significant financial and business interests.

As recently as 2007, Thompson disclosed financial holdings in Viacell and Aastrom Biosciences, biotechnology firms that work in adult stem cell research.

Further research obtained by the Democratic Party of Wisconsin indicates that Thompson presently serves as a Director for Cytori Therapeutics, a biotech that makes the equipment used to generate adult stem cells.

Yet Thompson continues to refuse to disclose his personal financial affairs.

“As Tommy Thompson urges the federal government to invest in adult stem cell research, Wisconsin voters deserve to know if Tommy still holds a financial interest in these technologies,” Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chair Mike Tate said Thursday. “Thompson has delayed the filing of his personal financial disclosure – is it to cover up the financial windfall he stands to receive as a result of shaking down federal cash for his fellow investors? Tommy should immediately disclose his business and financial interests.”