WASHINGTON (AP) – As the Zika virus escalates into a public health crisis, members of Congress are entrenched in familiar partisan positions.
Republicans and Democrats are pointing fingers over the failure to act as the number of mosquito-transmitted cases in the U.S. grows.
Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell warned lawmakers on Wednesday that her budget for fighting Zika is running out quickly. Without more money fast, she said, the “nation’s ability to effectively respond to Zika will be impaired.”
Yet lawmakers left Washington in mid-July for a seven-week recess without approving any of the $1.9 billion President Barack Obama requested in February to develop a vaccine and control the mosquitoes that carry the virus.
Congress is not expected to interrupt its lengthy summer break to pass the anti-Zika legislation.