Trump asks Congress for $2.5B to fight coronavirus

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WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) – President Donald Trump is asking Congress for more than $2 billion to fight the coronavirus.

Some are already saying that’s not nearly enough, especially as the epidemic continues to spread including 14 cases in the U.S.

Trump says the U.S. is winning against the coronavirus. But he’s asking Congress to approve $2.5 billion to fight the epidemic.

“I want to see more details, but I’m inclined to support what we need to do to make sure we don’t have holes in this public health safety net,” Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) said.

Brown said he worries the administration is more concerned with politics than public health.

“I’m concerned about the political people in the White House that don’t really know much about this,” Brown said.

The administration said the money requested, added to the budget it’s already put forward, shows its commitment to protecting Americans from the disease.

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“The budget reflects how seriously we take the threat of other infectious diseases, such as the China coronavirus, by prioritizing funding for CDC’s infectious disease programs,” said Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar.

Sen. Mike Braun (R-IN) said if the administration needs more than the $2.5 billion, he will support it.

“I, for one, and I’m very much a fiscal conservative, think that we will put the resources to it because those figures are small by D.C. standards,” Braun said.

He said despite the pushback from Democrats, he was satisfied with the classified coronavirus briefing he got this morning.

“I’ve been pleased with the containment and the ability to be ready to mitigate it,” Braun said.

It’s expected Congress will vote on the additional funding this week.

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