Gibbs to Obama: End the Double Standard, Help Protect Americans Against Zika
WASHINGTON, DC – After last week’s announcement by the CDC and EPA, Congressman Bob Gibbs led colleagues from House and Senate leadership in demanding President Obama give all Americans the same protections against the Zika virus. After publicly opposing HR 897/S 1500, the Zika Vector Control Act, which gives mosquito control programs the ability to fully implement their programs without duplicative and unnecessary federal permits, the Obama Administration announced its support for Puerto Rico to increasing its mosquito spraying program in an effort to stop the spread of Zika.
The letter, which can be found here, urges the President to end the double standard and give the continental United States the same tools, deemed “the most important tool” by EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, as those they encourage in Puerto Rico.
Upon sending the letter to the President, Congressman Gibbs released the following statement:
“Given Zika’s devastating effects on unborn children, eliminating regulatory barriers that hamper a comprehensive response to this virus makes the most sense. With no vaccine for Zika, eliminating the virus at the source is the most effective way to stop its spread. We have the appropriate tools, already approved by the EPA, to kill mosquitos carrying Zika. As Administrator McCarthy said, this can be done safely and effectively. I want to know why it is acceptable for Puerto Rico to increase their defense against Zika, but not the rest of the United States? All Americans should be protected against the spread of Zika and I encourage the President to change his mind and allow the increased use of live-saving pesticides and give pregnant women safety from this terrible illness. If the President ends his opposition to the Conference report, Congress can take swift action to protect those most vulnerable to Zika”
More information on HR 897 can be found here.