The Democratic-led U.S. Congress defied President George W. Bush on Thursday and gave final approval to legislation to roll back his restrictions on federally funded embryonic stem cell research.
But the 247-176 vote by the House of Representatives on the measure already passed by the Senate was short of the two-thirds majority needed to override a promised veto by Bush, who rejected a similar bill last year.
"If this bill were to become law, American taxpayers would for the first time in our history be compelled to support the deliberate destruction of human embryos," Bush said in a statement. "Crossing that line would be a grave mistake."
Thirty-seven of Bush's fellow Republicans joined 210 Democrats in voting for the bill.