Gerald Yorioka, MD, SCMS President
New Physician to Congress
While many physicians failed in their bids for Congress, including four in California, ,there was one successful challenger.. In Florida, Neal Dunn, MD (R), defeated three other candidates to win the open congressional seat in District 2.
In Louisiana, an interesting state with a great deal of physician activity, Charles Boustany, M.D., will be leaving his seat in Congress but will be in a top-two runoff later this year for the U.S. Senate. John Flemming, M.D. also left his seat in Congress to run for this same position, but did not make the cut.
In a close contest in Nevada Rep Joe Heck (R) lost 45% to 47% to Catherin Cortes Masto (D). In that race Tony Gumino, M.D. captured 1% of the vote as a write-in candidate.
Just across the Columbia River in Oregon, Governor Kate Brown was re-elected defeating Bud Pierce, M.D, forme state medical association president, who received a respectable 43% of the vote.
Ten Re-Elected Physician Representatives and Senators
And there were a few other healthcare winners last night — all of the current physician members of Congress who were seeking re-election. These included Sen. Rand Paul, MD (R-Ky.) and representatives Ralph Abraham, MD (R-La.), Ami Bera, MD (D-Calif.), Larry Bucshon, MD (R-Ind.), Michael Burgess, MD (R-Texas), Scott DesJarlais, MD (R-Tenn.), Andy Harris, MD (R-Md.), Tom Price, MD (R-Ga.), David “Phil” Roe, MD (R-Tenn.), and Raul Ruiz, MD (D-Calif.).
Of the total of 34 Senate and 435 House seats (total 469) it appears that there are 11 physicians elected or re-elected. That is just over 2%, which is better than the number of physicians in the general population. Visit the following more detailed information.
With the recent discussion of the value and future of the WSMA House of Delegates, the exposure and training for physicians to participate in the legislative process at any level needs to be appreciated. No one should question the value if our next governor comes from the ranks of the WSMA HOD.