Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., appeared on Fox News Monday and accidentally made the case for gun violence's being treated by the Surgeon General as a public health threat.
Despite blasting President Barack Obama for his Surgeon General nominee, Dr. Vivek Murthy, who believes guns are a threat to public health, Barrasso accidently ended up making the same case to “On The Record with Greta Van Susteren."
Anti-gun control legislators in Congress have opposed Murthy’s nomination. The New England physician has advocated for doctors' asking patients about gun safety and universal background checks for gun sales.
“Surgeon General is the nation’s doctor,” Barrasso told Fox News. “You want somebody who has a long history of experience in taking care of patients, and this nominee seems much more committed to politics than to patients. His claim-to-fame is farming organizations to help promote the healthcare law and to go after second amendment rights.”
“The job is sort of a peculiar one,” said Van Susteren. “Maybe that’s an inside word. There have been instances like the Surgeon General in the '60s was political about cigarettes. That somehow different in your mind?”
“Cigarettes dealt with one of the three major causes if not all three major causes of death in the United States — heart disease, cancer, and stroke,” Barrasso responded. “It’s [an] education process … There is a role for education, not trampling on the constitution.”
Gun violence causes as many deaths as automobile accidents in the United States and twice as many deaths as AIDS, according to ThinkProgress.
Reagan-appointed Surgeon General Dr. C. Everett Koop launched a major campaign against smoking and also believed gun violence is a threat to public health.