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Florida Democrats walk out of hearing for controversial health official

FloridaDemocrats walked out of the confirmation hearing for Joseph Ladapo, Governor Ron DeSantis’ choice to become the state’s surgeon general.

Ahead of the debate on whether to appoint Dr Ladapo to the position, Democratic State Senator Lauren Book said that her party would leave before the committee vote.

“We don’t feel that we’re getting any answers,” Ms Book said, according to the Tampa Bay Times. “The Florida Senate Democrats in this committee now are going to abstain, walk out and come back when we have more business.”

The Republicans, who are in the majority on the committee, then advanced Dr Ladapo’s nomination.

Dr Ladapo was appointed as Florida surgeon general by Mr DeSantis on 21 September last year. He said the Democrats walking out of the committee meeting was “unfortunate”.

“I certainly wish them well. I have no ill will towards them and I hope we can work together on issues of public health relevance to Floridians,” he told reporters.

The Democrats left the hearing after questioning Dr Ladapo on his beliefs on the effectiveness of Covid-19 vaccines and masks. They also asked him about his treatment of Democratic State Senator Tina Polsky.

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