Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont) Tuesday, February 25, 2020 "President Trump’s instinct of robbing Peter to pay Paul is once again on full display, demonstrating a dangerous level of incompetence within his administration to confront the global spread of the novel coronavirus. His administration is only requesting $1.25 billion in emergency funding, and the rest is drained from resources to combat Ebola and other unspecified public health programs.
"Further, in taking his “America First” mantra to the extreme, the President has included nothing for US AID to help contain the spread abroad. This is on top of the obscene cuts to the very programs meant to combat infectious diseases that President Trump proposed for next year in his budget released just two weeks ago.
"This poorly thought out, vague, and woefully inadequate request letter is a month late and would lead a cynic to believe it was merely cobbled together at the last minute to provide cover for Secretary Azar before answering to our Committee this morning. I will not write blank checks for this administration.
"I look forward to working with my friend, Chairman Shelby, on a comprehensive, emergency supplemental to address this emerging public health threat."