Obama, Congressional Leaders To Discuss Zika, Government-Wide Spending; CDC Director Says Agency ‘Essentially Out Of Money’ To Address Outbreak

Associated Press: CDC Director: ‘Essentially out of money’ to fight Zika
“The head of the government’s fight against the Zika virus said that ‘we are now essentially out of money’ and warned that the country is ‘about to see a bunch of kids born with microcephaly’ in the coming months. Friday’s warning from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Thomas Frieden came as lawmakers start to sort out a stopgap government funding bill that is being targeted to also carry long-delayed money to battle Zika…” (Taylor, 9/9).

Associated Press: Obama, Hill leaders meet ahead of federal funding deadline
“President Barack Obama is meeting with the top four leaders of Congress ahead of a month’s-end deadline to fund the government or face a shutdown, and with money all but gone to address the worsening Zika crisis. The White House meeting Monday afternoon is likely to focus on an emerging legislative compromise to address both issues…” (Werner, 9/12).

Associated Press: Puerto Rico doctors warn of scarce resources to fight Zika
“Doctors in Puerto Rico are warning that the U.S. territory does not have the resources to handle the fallout of a Zika epidemic as officials report an uptick in the number of fetuses with malformations that were carried by women infected with the virus…” (Coto, 9/9).

Dallas Morning News: CDC chief blasts Congress on Zika funding: ‘How could they have waited so long?’
“… ‘We’ll look at this delay in time and say: “How could they have waited so long? This was so urgent,”‘ Frieden said, adding that Zika is ‘the very definition of an emergency’ because of its immediate and permanent ramifications. [Last] week, the Senate failed for the third time to advance a bill that would have directed $1.1 billion to the Zika response because of what Democrats called poison pill provisions…” (Leslie, 9/9).

Wall Street Journal: Zika-Funding Deal Nears With Talk of Dropping Planned Parenthood Clause
“Lawmakers are edging closer to breaking a monthslong impasse over funds to combat the Zika virus, as Republican lawmakers and aides said they expected to drop a contentious provision that would effectively block funding to clinics in Puerto Rico that work with Planned Parenthood. Lawmakers and aides from both parties said Friday they anticipated that this month Congress would pass a package combining Zika funding with a spending bill that would keep the government running until early December. The government’s current funding is scheduled to expire at midnight on Sept. 30…” (Peterson, 9/9).

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