A candidate running to take over Rep. Fred Upton’s seat in Congress is defending his use of medical titles in his campaign.

Democrat Matt Longjohn M.D. of Portage is running for Michigan’s 6th District, and his campaign materials feature extensive use of his title, and other references to the medical field such as a heart-rate monitor on his yard signs. However, MLive reports that while Longjohn does have his medical degree and did complete his residency program, he has not been licensed to practice medicine since 2001, in Michigan or anywhere else.

The Michigan Republican Party says that he is violating the Public Health Code, which prohibits people from “inducing the belief” that they are lawfully allowed to practice medicine.

Longjohn, however, disagrees; on Monday, he said that he never has once represented himself as a practitioner, and that the law Republicans are referring to is just meant to prevent unlicensed people from treating patients. He says the use of his title in his campaign is meant to represent him as someone qualified to speak on public health, and issue he has put at the forefront of the race. He has criticized Rep. Upton for his opposition to the Affordable Care Act, known popularly as Obamacare.

Last week, a complaint against Longjohn was filed with the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs; LARA says they have yet to make a decision on whether the allegations warrant an investigation.

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