WASHINGTON BRIEFING

EXAMINING THE DOCTOR: A lively Senate hearing is assured this week when the President's controversial choice for surgeon general--Dr. Joycelyn Elders of Arkansas--arrives on Capitol Hill for her confirmation hearings. . . . A plain-speaking daughter of sharecroppers who worked her way through college by scrubbing bathrooms, Elders has aroused opposition from the Christian Coalition and other conservative groups for advocating the distribution of condoms and other contraceptives at high school health centers--with school board and parental consent. . . . The American Medical Assn. and public health groups are among her backers, and her confirmation seems assured, Senate sources say.

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