State Assembly member Marc Berman, D-Menlo Park, apologized Tuesday after cursing out loud at public speakers who were complaining about a proposed bill that pertains to "unprofessional conduct" by doctors.
Berman, who chairs the Assembly Business and Professions Committee, was facilitating the discussion of Assembly Bill 2098, which is authored by Assembly member Evan Low, D-Campbell, and which seeks to designate the spread of COVID-19 disinformation by physicians and surgeons as unprofessional conduct.
The hearing turned heated when numerous speakers came to the microphone to complain about the legislation, as well as about broader efforts by public health officials to encourage vaccination against COVID-19. Berman appeared to lose his patience after one man, wearing a T-shirt with the slogan "Good luck with your vaccines," came up to the microphone and told the committee that "anyone who supports this bill will be held accountable under Nuremberg Code," referring to a set of ethical principles pertaining to medical experimentation.
"Be warned, we are watching very closely," the man said.
"Hey, check it out," Berman responded. "I need everyone to follow the f---ing rules! Give your name, the organization you're with and your position on the bill."
After the reprimand, numerous speakers alluded to Berman's outburst by saying that they "f---ing oppose the bill." When they finished testifying, Berman apologized for cussing earlier in the hearing.
"I should not have done that," Berman said.
The bill ultimately advanced out of the committee by a 12-5 vote.