Physician and Congressman Calls for a Stop to “Appalling” Obstruction of Tom Price’s Confirmation

Honest, decent, caring, experienced: Those are the words U.S. Rep. Phil Roe (R-Tenn.) used to describe Dr. Tom Price (R-Ga.), President Trump’s nominee for secretary of Health and Human Services.

But that hasn’t stopped Senate Democrats from obstructing Price at nearly every turn, using smear tactics to question his character. Roe called the tactics “appalling.”

“Look, this guy is extremely qualified for this job,” Roe said in an interview on OppCast, a weekly podcast from Opportunity Lives.  

And when it comes to health care qualifications, Roe should know: he himself is a fellow physician with decades of experience under his belt, a perspective that has not dimmed even after a decade in Congress.

“Price is a deep-dive kind of guy when it comes to health care policy,” Roe said. “A guy with more than 25 years experience in this field, a guy whose wife is an anesthesiologist — I mean, that’s how immersed he in this world.”

“Price is a deep-dive kind of guy when it comes to health care policy”

Still, the obstructionist tactics being wrought by the Left — character smears and procedural boycotts, notably — show no signs of stopping anytime soon. This week, the Washington Post reported that Trump’s cabinet nominees have encountered a far more combative opposition in the Senate than any of their predecessors, describing the entire confirmation process as “increasingly driven by partisan political concerns.”

But as Roe noted in the case of Price, most of the Left’s objections are rooted more in showmanship — a loud objection to the perspective of the president — rather than real concerns over the nominees’ qualifications.

Lauren Cohen Bell, an expert on presidential appointments and current dean of academic affairs at Randolph-Macon College, told the Washington Post that Democrats don’t want to be seen as “capitulating to whatever the White House’s partisan perspectives or goals might be,” regardless of who the actual nominee is.

Because of this, Bell said, “the minority party is much less willing to go along with the president’s choices.”

“Honestly, I think Dr. Price is owed an apology by Senate Democrats,” Roe added. “I truly believe that.”

While it’s true that some members of the Senate have historically harbored personal objections to certain presidents’ nominees or goals, never before has such opposition risen out of policy disputes alone.

“And that’s what you see with Dr. Price,” said Roe. “We have a very decent man here — and the other side of the aisle knows this — but they are unable to reject him over his qualifications and policies.  So what they try to do then is to create something that’s nonexistent, this notion that he’s dishonest.”

“Honestly, I think Dr. Price is owed an apology by Senate Democrats,” Roe added. “I truly believe that.”

Price’s confirmation fate should be resolved on the Senate floor later this week.

Evan Smith is a Staff Writer for Opportunity Lives. You can follow him on Twitter @Evansmithreport.