The White House had detailed the outlines of the request earlier this month, arguing that new resources are needed to help ramp up surveillance efforts, control the mosquitoes spreading Zika, accelerate research into new vaccines and diagnostic tests, and help countries already battling the virus.“This request supports the necessary steps to fortify our domestic health system, detect and respond to any potential Zika outbreaks at home, and to limit the spread in other countries,” Obama wrote in a letter to House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.).
HERITAGE JUMPS INTO THE BUDGET DEBATE: House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) and budget committee chairman Tom Price (R-Ga.) are still working on a budget that will appease hard-liners without abandoning last year’s agreement to increase spending this coming year. Now the conservative Heritage Foundation is weighing in with a budget plan with deep spending cuts. Politico has more:
Heritage certainly isn’t going to win any brownie points with GOP leadership with its new budget proposal. Ryan is asking Republicans to back a budget with $1.070 trillion in discretionary spending for fiscal 2017; conservative lawmakers have argued for slicing off $30 billion, which would revert to sequester level spending rather than the deal worked out between Obama and former Speaker John Boehner. Heritage’s blueprint, meanwhile, calls for fully $80 billion in cuts. If that’s the gold standard for conservative budgeting, the skepticism Ryan faces is only likely to grow.“We’re not just backing up the $990 billion number,” Winfree said. “We’re showing members of the House what they’d otherwise be supporting if they ended up supporting the 1070 [level].”