X

Why Dentists Are Helping This Guy Get Re-Elected

Rep. Mike Simpson of Idaho is one of 2 in Congress
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 21, 2014 2:35 PM CST

(Newser) – As Rep. Mike Simpson braces for a tough re-election battle, he has some allies most members of Congress can't claim: dentists. Simpson is one of just two dentists in Congress; he even continued to practice in Idaho while serving in the Statehouse. This year he's trying to fend off a Tea Party challenge—the Club for Growth says the Republican has an "atrocious liberal record" and is helping his opponent, who has already raised more than $525,000—and that's where the dental lobby, which the National Journal calls "influential," comes in.

story continues below

The lobby is expected to put a lot of effort—and money—into protecting Simpson, a 15-year congressional veteran; it has already spent $22,000 on mailers and $20,000 on voter research by phone. "We'll try to raise as much as we can for him," says a VP at the American Dental Association. The organization raised $265,000 from 600 dentists to elect Rep. Paul Gosar, Congress' other dentist, in 2010. When Gosar was challenged by the Tea Party in 2012, the association and dentists dumped $360,000 into his race. And Simpson is well-placed on Capitol Hill, with enough power to help the lobby in the future; he's been known to co-sponsor bills supported by the association as well as stall bills opposed by it. (Read more dentists stories.)

We use cookies. By Clicking "OK" or any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. Read more in our privacy policy.
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
X