A man who wants to do things to ObamaCare that the Hippocratic oath might forbid him doing to a patient is now the top health official in America. Tom Price, a longtime Republican congressman from Georgia, was confirmed as the next Department of Health and Human Services secretary early Friday, the New York Daily News reports. He was confirmed in a 52-47 vote at around 2am without a single Democrat voting in favor. Price, a 62-year-old former orthopedic surgeon, has long been one of ObamaCare's fiercest critics and also supports slashing Medicare and Medicaid funding, Politico reports. During confirmation hearings, Price said he was "offended" by questions from Democrats about his trading in medical stocks.
Democrats had little hope of blocking the nomination, though they protested with hours of Senate speeches, the Hill reports. "Make no mistake: In the dark hours of the early morning, with the confirmation of Secretary Price, the Republicans launch the first assault in the war on seniors," Sen. Chuck Schumer said. Sen. Bernie Sanders called Price's policies the "exact opposite" of what Trump promised on the campaign trail. "My opposition to Congressman Price has less to do with his well-known extreme right-wing economic views than it has to do with the hypocrisy and dishonesty of President Trump," Sanders said. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, one of the few Republicans to speak, praised Price as somebody who understood health care both as a policymaker and a physician, the Washington Post reports. (Read more Tom Price stories.)