Satcher Sworn In As Surgeon General
Position filled after four-year vacancy
WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, Feb. 12) -- For the first time in four years the nation has a top doctor, as Dr. David Satcher was sworn in as surgeon general in an Oval Office ceremony Friday.
President Bill Clinton praised the Senate's bipartisan majority that confirmed Satcher, who will also serve as assistant secretary of health.
"He'll guide our nation on the most important public health issues of our time, from increasing public awareness on how to prevent some of our most devastating diseases to helping free our children from the deadly grip of tobacco," Clinton said.
"As surgeon general, I see America's health challenges not as irresolvable problems, but as golden opportunities," Satcher said.
Vice President Al Gore administered the oath to Satcher.
Satcher, former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, was confirmed on a 63-35 Senate vote Tuesday, following months of debate over his nomination. Republican complaints centered around Satcher's opposition to legislation banning some late-term abortions.
The surgeon general's position has been vacant since Joycelyn Elders resigned in 1994.