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VIDEO: Rubio Urges Congress To Put Politics Aside On Zika

Apr 28, 2016 | Press Releases

Rubio: “There is no such thing as a Republican position on Zika or Democrat position on Zika because these mosquitoes bite everyone, and they’re not going to ask you what your party registration is or who you plan to vote for in November.”

Washington, D.C. – In a Senate floor speech today, U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) urged his colleagues to have a sense of urgency in dealing with the Zika virus. He warned that the virus is a real threat to all Americans and requires action by Congress.

“I hope that there is real urgency about dealing with this. I understand this is not a political issue,” said Rubio. “There is no such thing as a Republican position on Zika or Democrat position on Zika because these mosquitoes bite everyone, and they’re not going to ask you what your party registration is or who you plan to vote for in November.

“This is a real threat, and it is not just the tropical states. They may feel it first, but any state that has any significant travel, which is basically all 50 states of the union in a country where people travel extensively across the country and around the world, we are going to face the Zika problem in this country this summer and fall,” Rubio continued. “And my advice to my colleagues is we’re going to deal with this, and I hope we deal with it at the front end, because not only is it better for our people, it’s better for you. You’re going to have to explain to people why it is that we sat around for weeks and did nothing on something of this magnitude.”

A partial transcript of Rubio’s remarks is available below. A video is available here, and a broadcast quality video is available for download here.

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio
Senate Floor Speech
April 28, 2016
https://youtu.be/-wDySERAeNY

Senator Marco Rubio: It is the obligation of the federal government to keep our people safe, and this is an imminent and real threat to the public safety and security of our nation and of our people.

So the money is going to be spent, and the question is do we do it now before this has become a crisis or do we wait for it to become a crisis? And maybe that crisis happens in August when everyone is back home doing their campaign stuff, or maybe it happens on Monday when everyone is back home doing whatever they do on recess. And then you’re all going to get pulled back here to deal with this immediately.

I understand that we want this money to be accountable. I believe that, I do. I think the Administration should come forward and say, ‘Here is our plan, here’s where every penny is going to be spent, here’s how we’re going to spend it.’ And we should hold them to account and if there’s ways to improve it we should.

I hope that there is real urgency about dealing with this. I understand this is not a political issue. There is no such thing as a Republican position on Zika or Democrat position on Zika because these mosquitoes bite everyone, and they’re not going to ask you what your party registration is or who you plan to vote for in November.

This is a real threat, and it is not just the tropical states. They may feel it first, but any state that has any significant travel, which is basically all 50 states of the union in a country where people travel extensively across the country and around the world, we are going to face the Zika problem in this country this summer and fall. And my advice to my colleagues is we’re going to deal with this, and I hope we deal with it at the front end, because not only is it better for our people, it’s better for you. You’re going to have to explain to people why it is that we sat around for weeks and did nothing on something of this magnitude.