White House Gagged Surgeon General

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Testifying before congress, Richard H Carmona, Surgeon General from 2002 to 2006, said that top Bush Administration officials interfered with his office for political reasons.

The NY Times has this breaking story.

Dr. Carmona, who served as surgeon general from 2002 to 2006, said White House officials would not allow him to speak or issue reports about stem cells, emergency contraception, sex education, or prison, mental and global health issues because of political concerns. Top administration officials delayed for years and attempted to “water down” a landmark report on secondhand tobacco smoke, he said in sworn testimony before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

Carmona was given guidance directing him to politicize his speeches to promote the president and the Republicans. The politicizing even went to discouraging involvement in Democrat linked events such as the Special Olympics, which has ties to the Kennedy's

“I was specifically told by a senior person, ‘Why would you want to help those people?’ ” Dr. Carmona said.

Carmona's testimony couldn't be better timed as his successor, Dr. James W. Holsinger Jr., is scheduled to testify at confirmation hearings this week.

Lest you believe this is common practice, Carmona compared noted with six past surgeons general who all agree, he says, that the interference he's experienced is not typical.

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