Press Releases

Washington, D.C. U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) today again urged Congress to return to Washington to approve Zika funding following the announcement of a Zika outbreak in the Wynwood neighborhood of Miami and a total of 14 cases transmitted by mosquitoes. Rubio made his comments during a media availability in Clearwater, FL.
 
U.S. Senator Marco Rubio
Media Availability
August 1, 2016
Clearwater, FL
 
Senator Marco Rubio: “When we sat and met with the epidemiologists, they described how this disease develops and overlaid it over what life is like in Florida in the summer: mosquitoes, warm weather and travel. We knew this was going to be a problem. That’s why I’ve supported every single Zika initiative that has been brought before us, and I hope we’ll return to Washington quickly, take a day and just pass this funding measure so we can start to get funds flowing. A week ago, before the cases were announced, I had asked President Obama to take $300 million that’s disposable, that he has under his control, and fully utilize that to get ahead of it.
 
“This is a health care issue. It’s also an economic issue. You are already starting to see travel advisories against the Wynwood neighborhood in Miami. The British [government] has put out a travel advisory to their tourists. So you begin to get concerned about visitors from abroad reading the news or even from the U.S. and deciding maybe Florida is not the place to go because of Zika. We don’t want to see that happen. It’s important for us to get ahead of it.
 

 
“The Senate developed bipartisan legislation for $1.1 billion. I wanted the $1.9 billion, I supported the president’s initiative but we knew there was a sense of urgency so we supported the $1.1 billion which is bipartisan. Senator Nelson worked on it, I worked on, and I think that’s the one that can get the votes to get passed. 
 
“The House has kind of settled down on their proposal, and I hope they’ll move from that position. And to be honest with you, I hope we don’t have to wait until September. I’m prepared to go back in a moment’s notice and vote on this and get it done quickly given the state of affairs now. We’ve got 14 confirmed mosquito infections in Florida. We probably have many more; they’re just not diagnosed because most people who are not symptomatic are not going to get a Zika test.”