Doctors for America:
A leftwing advocacy group that goes beyond healthcare
Doctors for America has a prescription for the United States: Leftwing policies, regardless of whether they are related to the practice of medicine. The group masquerades as a healthcare advocacy group, but its activities reveal a political agenda that far exceeds the promotion of healthcare policies. While leveraging the credibility of medical professionals, Doctors for America inserts itself into the debate over climate change, gun control, and the anti-police movement, among other issues.
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Doctors for America Origins
The group hasn’t always gone by Doctors for America. In 2008, Vivek Murthy–who had previously been on the New England Steering Committee for Obama’s Democratic primary campaign–founded the organization, along with other physicians, as Doctors for Obama. While the group claimed to have no formal ties to Obama’s campaign, POLITICO referenced them as “an arm of the Obama campaign” and the entities shared policy advisors.
After the 2008 election, Doctors for Obama rebranded with the financial backing of the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank, and Doctors for America was born.
Issues Beyond Healthcare
Doctors for America isn’t limited to pushing leftwing healthcare policies. The group advocates for a wide range of political issues under the guise of improving public health.
Vivek Murthy, who led Doctors for America, would go on to become Obama’s surgeon general. During this time, he spoke about climate change as a public health issue and called on the U.S. to better mitigate it. Beyond Murthy, Doctors for America has argued climate change needs to be reframed as a public health threat, and at one time, promoted a piece headlined “Has Your Doctor Talked To You About Climate Change?”
Doctors for America has repeatedly worked to advance gun control efforts and coordinated with Democrats and liberal groups to do so. In 2013, Doctors for America partnered with longtime gun control advocate Sen. Dianne Feinstein to push a federal ban on semiautomatic rifles. In 2015, the group joined with Democratic politicians to demand Congress view gun violence as a public health epidemic.
Doctors for America has taken anti-police and anti-incarceration positions, including calling on jurisdictions to reduce their jail population because of COVID-19. Doctors for America endorsed the People’s Response Act, a federal bill that called for “scaling back the role of law enforcement” and instead spend $10 billion on a “new public safety agency” that is not police.