government

Physician lawmaker switches to GOP

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted Jan. 18, 2010

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Rep. Parker Griffith, MD, (R, Ala.) left the Democratic party on Dec. 23, 2009, to join the Republican party. Dr. Griffith, a retired radiation oncologist, told news outlets that the Democratic party had become too liberal and that its leaders weren't focusing on priorities for his district in north Alabama, including missile defense.

In response, nearly every one of his staff members resigned on Jan. 4, calling the switch a "mistake," according to a statement released by the former staffers.

Dr. Griffith voted with fellow Democrats by supporting the Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act and a bill giving the Food and Drug Administration authority to regulate tobacco. But he voted against the House health system reform bill.

Note: This item originally appeared at http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2010/01/18/gvbf0118.htm.

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