(Washington, D.C.) –Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), top Democrat on the Labor, Health, and Human Services Appropriations subcommittee, issued the following statement on Republicans’ decision to introduce partisan legislation in response to the Zika virus.
“For months, Democrats have urged Republicans to come to the table and work with us on a serious response to the Zika virus, which has already infected nearly 2200 people across the United States and the territories and left expecting mothers worrying about how this frightening virus might impact their families. So it is deeply disappointing—in fact, it’s appalling—that after months of dragging their feet, Republicans now plan to introduce a hyperpartisan proposal that is more about throwing red meat to the Tea Party than actually tackling this crisis.
“If Republicans think the way to respond to this virus is to restrict access to contraception, play politics with Planned Parenthood riders, cut the Affordable Care Act and take even more funding from the ongoing fight against Ebola, then they’re not listening to scientists, they’re not listening to doctors, and they’re not listening to their constituents. And to add insult to injury, Republicans have packaged this awful Zika proposal with a bill that cuts critical investments in veterans' health care and services. Frankly, this proposal isn’t just irresponsible—it’s an insult to women and families everywhere.”