Everytown for Gun Safety released the following statement today from President John Feinblatt in response to the U.S. Senate’s confirmation of Dr. Vivek Murthy to the position of United States Surgeon General.
“The United States Senate today stood up to the gun lobby by confirming Dr. Vivek Murthy as our country’s next surgeon general – an important step forward in addressing gun violence in our country as a public health problem.
“But this is about more than just the confirmation of our country’s top doctor, it’s also a defeat for the gun lobby that has fought tooth-and-nail to keep gun violence prevention off of the agenda in Washington. For decades the NRA has suppressed funding for research to understand gun violence and pushed for legislation to muzzle doctors and military leaders from being able to talk to their patients or troops about firearm safety. Just last week the National Rifle Association’s Executive Director Chris Cox sent a letter to Senators Reid and McConnell calling for the Senate to oppose his nomination and hyperbolically stating that ‘confirmation of Dr. Murthy is a prescription for disaster.’ In a further attempt to hijack Dr. Murthy’s nomination, Cox threatened that the NRA would score the confirmation vote – well, it didn’t work this time.
“This loosening of the gun lobby’s grip on political leaders is a meaningful step in the right direction – and one that falls in line with progress we’ve seen across the country. This year common sense public safety measures passed in numerous states – and most recently, the voters of Washington State passed a background check ballot initiative that will make it harder for dangerous people to get their hands on guns. A similar initiative just qualified for the ballot in Nevada. We are glad that our leaders in DC are listening and standing up for gun safety.
“Thank you to Senator Reid and the U.S. Senate for taking this important step to address gun violence as a public health issue and ultimately, save lives.”