Paul Begala, a democratic strategist and CNN political contributor, is set to headline the ACEP Scientific Assembly in Boston next week. The former Clinton consultant makes no apologies about his health care politics, stating in a recent piece in the Washington Post that "it would be a bitter disappointment if health reform did not include a public option." Begala, who also writes that he is "skeptical, at best, of the Washington elite's worship of bipartisanship," may seem an odd choice for ACEP, given the fairly even political split within the college. In a recent interview, Angela Gardner, incoming ACEP president, stated that on "most polarizing issues in medicine, like the public option, half of our members feel one way, and half feel the other way." A recent EPM poll showed EPs divided 60/40 against a 'public option'. Given this political divide, it will be telling to hear the tenor of Begala's address, and to see how it is received.
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