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U.S. Congress Adjourns For Summer Recess Without Approving Funding For Zika Response

CIDRAP News: Senate impasse postpones Zika funding talks till fall
“In the last chance for Congress to act on a Zika funding bill before it breaks for a 7-week recess, members of the Senate [Thursday] failed to advance a House version of a compromise bill, putting federal support for response activities on hold until fall…” (Schnirring, 7/14).

CQ News: Senate Again Rejects Moving to a Vote on Zika, Veterans Funding
“…Thursday’s 52-44 vote, which came about two weeks after the first vote on June 28, followed weeks of terse floor speeches by Democrats and Republicans. During that time leaders of both parties criticized each other over policy provisions and offsets, but made no progress during actual negotiations…” (Shutt, 7/14).

The Hill: Senate punts Zika fight to the fall
“…Sixty votes were needed to move forward with the Zika money, which is attached to a larger military and veterans spending bill. The vote comes as lawmakers are at a standstill over how to get the Zika proposal to President Obama’s desk before the summer recess…” (Carney, 7/14).

New York Times: Congress Recesses, Leaving More Stalemates Than Accomplishments
“Congress limped out of town Thursday for a seven-week recess, leaving behind a trail of partisan fights, a failed bill to help fight the Zika virus, a stalemate on gun safety, and a few mundane accomplishments that members hoped to sell as awesome to voters in an unsparing mood…” (Herszenhorn/Steinhauer, 7/14).

Roll Call: Senate Rejects Zika Package Again, No Signs of a Deal
“…Democrats have repeatedly criticized Republicans for including language in the conference report that they say would prevent funds from going to Planned Parenthood clinics in Puerto Rico…” (Shutt, 7/14).

STAT: Senate still stuck on Zika, leaves funding unresolved until September
“…In the meantime, the Obama administration has warned that the country’s response would be hampered without new funding for Zika. Some of the activities that could be stopped or postponed include research into the virus’s link to birth defects, mosquito-tracking across the United States, and support for state and local rapid response…” (Scott, 7/14).

TIME: Zika Funding Bill Fails as Congress Is Unable to Reach Compromise
“…After this week, Congress will recess till September. That punts funding for research and prevention of a virus that is proven to cause severe birth defects in infants and has already infected more than a thousand travelers in the continental United States. Zika has infected more than a million people in Central and South America. Hundreds of babies have been born with shrunken heads, a disease called microcephaly, from mothers infected with Zika…” (Drabold, 7/15).

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