The age of politicizing everything is here and President Obama's pick for Surgeon General is no different. Dr. Vivek Hallegere Murthy has been tapped to lead the charge when it comes to promoting public health with the full weight of the federal government behind him. He also has a history of promoting gun control, of slamming the Second Amendment and has publicly called guns a "healthcare issue" and public health threat.
Dr. Vivek Hallegere Murthy is the president and founder of Doctors for America, which grew from the campaign organization that was called Doctors for Obama, started in 2008. The organization has advocated for a number of liberal initiatives, including strongly supporting the passage of Obamacare and Medicaid expansion.
The group has also been supportive of the Obama administration’s failed push for expanding gun control laws in 2013. It successfully fought a proposed Florida law that would have prevented doctors from including in a person’s medical file whether they are a gun owner. Doctors for America has referred to guns as a public health threat, and circulated a petition to pressure Congress to pass stricter gun laws.
Investors Business Daily reported on Murthy’s anti-gun tweets, including, “Tired of politicians playing politics w/ guns, putting lives at risk b/c they’re scared of NRA. Guns are a health care issue,” during the 2012 presidential elections, and in December 2012 in the immediate aftermath of the Sandy Hook massacre: “NRA press conference disappointing but predictable — blame everything in the world except guns for the Newtown tragedy. #wakeup.”
We've already seen doctors across the country asking patients if they have guns in their homes and recently, we saw President Obama sign new gun control executive orders related to mental health, an area Murthy would cover if confirmed.
The National Rifle Association is strongly opposing the nomination and has urged its five million members to contact their Senators. NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris Cox has also written a letter to Senate leadership opposing the nomination.
The National Rifle Association strongly opposes the confirmation of Vivek Hallegere Murthy, M.D., M.B.A., as United States Surgeon General.
The Surgeon General has the important tasks of providing the American public with information to better inform decisions related to their health and directing much of the federal government's public health efforts. In order for these roles to be carried out effectively, the public must trust that the Surgeon General's actions are based on empirical and scientific evidence, rather than political or ideological motives. In this regard, Dr. Murthy's record of political activism in support of radical gun control measures raises significant concerns about his ability to objectively examine issues pertinent to America's 100 million firearm owners and the likelihood he would use the office of Surgeon General to further his preexisting campaign against gun ownership.
Murthy recently made it through a vote from Senators on the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions and will face a full Senate floor vote sometime in the near future. Although Majority Leader Harry Reid has nuked the filibuster and set up Senate rules that nearly guarantee Murthy's confirmation, red state Democrats are going to have a tough time in an election year justifying a confirmation vote for an anti-Second Amendment activist.