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Saturday, August 19, 2017
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Obama To Meet With Congressional Leaders On Monday: White House

The group is expected to talk about a continuing resolution, or CR, to temporarily fund the government when the 2017 fiscal year begins on Oct. 1. Congress has yet to approve full appropriations bills to fund the government in fiscal 2017, a senior Democratic congressional aide said.

September 9, 2016
Former Republican presidential candidate Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) talks to reporters as he arrives on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., July 6, 2016. REUTERS/Carlos Barria/File Photo

Republicans’ Congress Lull Could Impede A Clinton Presidency

Republicans in Congress are planning a light legislative agenda as they return from their long summer break on Tuesday, a strategy some say is designed in part to bog down Hillary Clinton if she becomes president. It is not uncommon for the Congress to take it slow in an election year and legislative delays could work in Republicans’ favor if their nominee Donald Trump takes the White House in November.

September 6, 2016
A woman looks at a Center for Disease Control (CDC) health advisory sign about the dangers of the Zika virus as she lines up for a security screening at Miami International Airport in Miami, Florida, U.S., May 23, 2016. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

Politics, Bad Timing Killed Zika Deal In Congress

Democrats and Republicans were tantalizingly close to a deal on funding Zika prevention measures this summer when it all fell apart in the final 48 hours, according to interviews with a half-dozen senior congressional staffers involved in the talks.

September 4, 2016
Rick Scott

Rick Scott’s List Of How To Fight Zika In 14 Easy Steps

1. Whenever a new Zika case is confirmed in Florida, I will immediately rush to that county and stage a “round-table” discussion. This will calm fears in the local community, and lead tourists to believe that it’s still safe to visit.

August 29, 2016
Test tubes with blood samples from patients who have been tested for Zika are seen at the maternity ward of the Hospital Escuela in Tegucigalpa, Honduras April 15, 2016. REUTERS/Jorge Cabrera

FDA Recommends Zika Testing For All Blood Donated In U.S.

The agency said its decision was based on concerns about more cases of local transmission in Florida, the growing number of travel-related infections and concerns that Zika-tainted blood could unwittingly be given to a pregnant woman, putting her unborn baby at risk of severe birth defects.

August 28, 2016
An edes aegypti mosquito is seen inside a test tube as part of a research on preventing the spread of the Zika virus and other mosquito-borne diseases at a control and prevention center in Guadalupe, neighbouring Monterrey, Mexico, in this March 8, 2016 file photo. REUTERS/Daniel Becerril/Files

Zika Concern Leading Constituents To Push GOP Action

Concerns over the Zika virus are leading constituents in affected areas to push their Republican members of Congress for action. This is not the first time there have been significant calls for action on Zika, but this past summer, Congressional Republicans left for a seven week recess without doing anything to address the growing crisis.

August 19, 2016
Test tubes with blood samples from patients who have been tested for Zika are seen at the maternity ward of the Hospital Escuela in Tegucigalpa, Honduras April 15, 2016. REUTERS/Jorge Cabrera

One Quarter Of Puerto Rico Expected To Contract Zika Virus By The End Of 2016

The Centers for Disease Control estimates that a full quarter of Puerto Rico’s residents will be infected with the Zika virus by the end of 2016. That dire warning was initially made in June, as health officials noted the disease was spreading at previously unexpected speeds.

August 17, 2016

#EndorseThis: Trump Surrogate Calls For Banning Abortions For Mothers With Zika

Trump surrogate Scottie Nell Hughes appeared on CNN to discuss Zika’s spread and Sen. Marco Rubio’s opposition to abortions for pregnant women infected with the mosquito-borne virus, which can cause microcephaly.

August 8, 2016
A woman looks at a Center for Disease Control (CDC) health advisory sign about the dangers of the Zika virus as she lines up for a security screening at Miami International Airport in Miami, Florida, U.S., May 23, 2016. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

The GOP Senate Blocked Zika Funding — Now Marco Rubio Wants Obama To Foot The Bill

Federal officials took nearly $600 million that had been aimed at fighting Ebola and shifted it to battle Zika instead when Congress first balked at approving $1.9 billion in funding that the administration had requested. The White House continued to press for the larger amount, but Congress failed to agree and then left for a seven-week summer recess.

August 3, 2016
Test tubes with blood samples from patients who have been tested for Zika are seen at the maternity ward of the Hospital Escuela in Tegucigalpa, Honduras April 15, 2016. REUTERS/Jorge Cabrera

Congress Missed Its Chance To Help Combat Zika

“By the time they get back, it’ll be really too late to have much impact,” said Dr. Peter Hotez, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. “So whatever is going to happen, looks like it’s going to happen.”

August 3, 2016
Aedes aegypti mosquitoes are seen inside Oxitec laboratory in Campinas, Brazil, February 2, 2016. REUTERS/Paulo Whitaker/File Photo

Mosquito-Borne Zika Infections In South Florida Spread Worry Nationwide

Four people in Dade and Broward counties were infected in early July, got sick a week later and were diagnosed a couple of days after that. “All the evidence we have seen indicates that this is mosquito-borne transmission that occurred several weeks ago,” said Tom Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

July 31, 2016
An edes aegypti mosquito is seen inside a test tube as part of a research on preventing the spread of the Zika virus and other mosquito-borne diseases at a control and prevention center in Guadalupe, neighbouring Monterrey, Mexico, in this March 8, 2016 file photo. REUTERS/Daniel Becerril/Files

Zika Sex Research Begins Despite U.S. Congress Funding Impasse

Borrowing money earmarked for other programs, the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases has started enrolling men infected with Zika in Brazil and Colombia in the study to determine how long the virus remains transmittable in semen.

July 1, 2016
Josemary da Silva, 34, combs the hair of 5-month-old Gilberto after giving him a bath at her house in Algodao de Jandaira, Brazil February 17, 2016. Gilberto is da Silva's fifth child and was born with microcephaly. REUTERS/Ricardo Moraes

Republicans Use Zika To Fight For Pesticide Deregulation

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — and congressional Democrats, and President Obama — has requested funds to study and fight the virus, but Republicans want to combat it by stripping away environmental regulations on an array of pesticides.

June 2, 2016
Test tubes with blood samples from patients who have been tested for Zika are seen at the maternity ward of the Hospital Escuela in Tegucigalpa, Honduras April 15, 2016. REUTERS/Jorge Cabrera

Republicans Strip Local Health Departments By Failing to Address Zika

Local health departments do not have months to wait for Republicans to fund the Zika fight. In July, the CDC will shift $44 million of its emergency response funds to fight Zika unless the funds are allocated by Congress, an action that would have crippling effects at the local level.

May 31, 2016
Speaker of the House John Boehner addresses the members of the 114th Congress after being re-elected as the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives at the start of the 114th Congress at the U.S. Capitol in Washington January 6, 2015. REUTERS/Jim Bourg

5 Reasons This May Be The Worst Congress Ever

Norm Ornstein, a non-partisan expert on the inner workings of Congress says it’s “no exaggeration” to call this one the worst ever. And sometimes even that seems mild. Here’s why.

May 23, 2016