PHILADELPHIA — The United States has taken "a giant step backward for children" since last November's congressional elections, Vermont Gov. Howard Dean, M.D., told pediatricians at the 1995 AAP Spring Session.

Pediatricians should exercise political force and use their credibility as children's advocates to ensure young people are not shortchanged as a GOP-dominated Congress attempts to revamp financing for federal programs affecting children, the Democratic governor said.

"If you were ever going to use (your credibility), I urge you to use it now," Dr. Dean said, "because you may not have the opportunity to use it again."

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