Anti-gun Surgeon General nominee on hold
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the Obama administration is putting the nomination of Vivek Murthy as U.S. Surgeon General on hold because of a lack of support in the Senate - even among many Democrats - specifically because of his support for gun control.
From the article:
The White House's decision to tap the brakes on its nomination of Vivek Murthy as U.S. Surgeon General is casting fresh doubt on its ability to navigate resistance within the president's own party.
As many as 10 Senate Democrats potentially oppose Dr. Murthy because of his support for gun control.
The White House is being forced to rethink its strategy over his nomination less than two weeks after the Senate derailed the president's pick for a top Justice Department nominee. This comes after the Senate changed the chamber's rules to make it easier to bypass GOP objections for such nominations.
The article goes on to note that this year's midterm elections, which have the potential to strip Democrats of their slim hold on the Senate, have added to the hurdles facing some nominees.
Mr. Murthy has called gun control a public health issue, and now faces opposition from the National Rifle Association. Crossing the country's top gun lobby would be a significant liability for many of the vulnerable Democrats up for re-election this year.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.) is unlikely to bring to the floor a nominee who could both cause political problems for Democrats and likely fail to get confirmed, a senior Senate Democratic aide said Sunday.
Administration officials have not yet offered details about their plans going forward for Dr. Murthy's nomination. A senior administration official said Sunday that they were taking a step back to decide the best way to proceed.
Dr. Murthy, 36 years old and educated at Harvard and Yale, is a doctor at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston. He is the president and co-founder of Doctors for America, a group that supports the Affordable Care Act, and the chairman of a Needham, Mass., technology firm, TrialNetworks, which provides software to help run clinical trials. Doctors for America has advocated for policies that include a ban on semiautomatic firearms. Dr. Murthy also has drawn criticism for an October 2012 tweet about guns in which he wrote: "Guns are a health care issue."
Chris Cox, executive director of NRA's political arm, said in a Feb. 26 letter to Mr. Reid and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) that the NRA opposed Mr. Murthy because of his support for a "wide array of gun control policies," including a federal ban of certain semiautomatic firearms, often called assault weapons, and their ammunition.
This development speaks volumes. If Obama can't get his anti-gun Surgeon General through a Senate controlled by his own party, even after Majority Leader Harry Reid changed the rules, there is hope the Senate would also not confirm another rabid anti-gun nominee for U.S. Supreme Court, should there be a vacancy.
This is also an indication of just how unpopular the Obama has become, even in his own party. Four years ago, the Senate moved in lock step with the anti-gun president - doing anything he asked. Today, he is looking like another weak 2nd term president.
It is critically important that youcontact your Senators and ask them to OPPOSE confirmation of President Obama's radically anti-gun nominee--Dr. Vivek Murthy--for U.S. Surgeon General.
You can contact your U.S. Senators by using the "Write Your Lawmakers" tool at NRAILA.org. You may also contact your Senators by phone at (202) 224-3121.
Chad D. Baus is the Buckeye Firearms Association Secretary, and BFA PAC Vice Chairman.