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View Diary: Daily Kos Elections Live Digest: 6/27 (376 comments)

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  •  I mentioned last night how (21+ / 0-)

    Bridenstine got a bunch of potentially eyecare-related donations as well.  Now that I can pay it a bit more attention: he got $2,500 each from Robert Zoellner and his (I guess) wife; $2,500 from an optometrist named Richard Presley, $2,500 from David Cockrell, and maybe more.  

    And here's why:

    Bridenstine's opponent in the 1st District Republican primary race is incumbent John Sullivan, who has drawn the ire of Zoellner and other optometrists by introducing "federal legislation to govern what optometrists can do in Oklahoma," said Zoellner, denouncing a bill titled the "Healthcare Truth and Transparency Act of 2011."

    It's a wedge issue that, rest assured, was not the focus of any audience-submitted questions when Sullivan and Bridenstine met June 12 at a forum hosted by the Republican Women's Club of Tulsa County.

    Most of the optometrists wrote three-figure checks. But in the world of politics, such financial support can provide a vital boost to a political newcomer like Bridenstine.
    [...]

    Zoellner described in passionate terms his opposition to the Sullivan bill -- also introduced by Congressman David Scott, a Democrat from Georgia -- even though the bill didn't mention optometry by name. It sought to prohibit "health care professionals" from misrepresenting themselves in either statements or acts.

    The bill also stated that "any person who is advertising health care services provided by such person, shall disclose in such advertisement the applicable license under which such person is authorized to provide such services."

    It may not sound alarming, but it highlighted the divide between optometrists, who are eye doctors without a medical degree, and ophthalmologists, who are eye specialists with a medical degree. The American Optometric Association declared the bill "nefarious legislation" spawned by "organized medicine's lobbying machine," and took note that Sullivan had introduced similar legislation in the past.

    An ophthalmology professional group has spent $10,000 to support Sullivan directly, and this month reported spending $39,000 independently on radio ads for Sullivan.

    After criticizing Sullivan and "his medical cronies," Zoellner said he supports Bridenstine beyond just opposition to this one particular issue, calling him "honorable" and a "good man."

    Bridenstine said "that particular issue, that's not why I got in this race," adding, "it wasn't even on my radar screen."

    His opposition to Sullivan's bill is an extension of his political beliefs, he said.

    So, yep.  Proxy war.

    26, Dem, Dude seeing a dude, CT-04(originally), PA-02/NY-14 (formerly PA-02/NY-12).

    by Xenocrypt on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 11:07:55 AM PDT

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