On Friday, the Trump administration asked Obama’s pro-gun control Surgeon General, Dr. Vivek Murthy, to resign.
Murthy was confirmed to the position of Surgeon General on December 15, 2014. The lead-up to the confirmation vote on Murthy focused on his “political activism,” particularly his positions on gun control.
Opposition from the NRA and other gun rights groups — together with Republican opposition — actually made it difficult to predict whether Murthy could be confirmed.
In fact, he was so pro-gun control that Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV), a red state Democratic proponent of gun control, refused to vote for him.
But former Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) crossed the aisle and voted yes in Manchin’s place, giving Americans a Surgeon General who viewed gun policy as a “health care issue.”
Murthy reiterated his ongoing support for gun control as recently as June 3, 2016, telling STAT:
I got into some trouble for saying gun violence is a public health issue. A little bit of trouble. But you know, I was stating what I think is the obvious, and I think most people in the country understand, which is that far too many people die from gun violence. And in my book, every single death from gun violence is a tragedy because it was preventable. It’s unacceptable.
Murthy has now been removed and replaced by Rear Adm. Sylvia Trent-Adams. She was previously the Deputy Surgeon General.