KCCU News
6:31 am
Wed August 13, 2008

Coburn Defended for Delivering Babies

Oklahoma City, OK – The Oklahoma Legislature's only doctor says U.S. senators should thank Sen. Tom Coburn for delivering babies for free, instead of trying to censure him under ethics rules.

State Rep. Doug Cox called the sitution ``ridiculous,'' referring to recent reports of an escalation in a long-running fight between Coburn and the Senate Ethics Committee.

Coburn spokesman John Hart says the ethics panel most recently has argued it is a conflict for the senator to deliver babies at the Muskogee Regional Medical Center because it is now owned by a for-profit entity.

Hart says it would be like requiring House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who is currently on a tour promoting her new book, to only have stops at public libraries.

Before coming to the Senate, Coburn had an arrangement in the U.S. House that allowed him to continue practicing medicine as long has he only recouped his costs and did not make a profit.

But when he came to the Senate in 2004, he was told that arrangement violated that chamber's rule against outside income.