Senators block dueling Zika proposals for second day
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Senators blocked dueling proposals funding a response to the Zika virus for the second time this week with days left before lawmakers leave for a recess that lasts until September. 
Sen. Bill NelsonClarence (Bill) William Nelson Trump, facing trouble in Florida, goes all in NASA names DC headquarters after agency's first Black female engineer Mary W. Jackson NASA, SpaceX and the private-public partnership that caused the flight of the Crew Dragon MORE (D-Fla.) tried to bring up the $1.1 billion deal spearheaded by Sens. Patty MurrayPatricia (Patty) Lynn MurrayPelosi huddles with chairmen on surprise billing but deal elusive House approves two child care bills aimed at pandemic GOP, Democratic relief packages B apart on vaccine funding MORE (D-Wash) and Roy BluntRoy Dean BluntSenate leaves until September without coronavirus relief deal COVID-19 relief talks look dead until September  Davis: The Hall of Shame for GOP senators who remain silent on Donald Trump MORE (R-Mo.), but Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOn The Money: Senate leaves until September without coronavirus relief agreement | Weekly jobless claims fall below 1 million for first time since March | Trump says no Post Office funding means Democrats 'can't have universal mail-in voting' Overnight Health Care: Senate leaves until September without coronavirus relief deal | US records deadliest day of summer | Georgia governor drops lawsuit over Atlanta's mask mandate Senate leaves until September without coronavirus relief deal MORE objected. 
The Kentucky Republican, in turn, tried to bring up a GOP-supported conference report, but Nelson objected. 
"Now here we are in the same old political games," Nelson said from the Senate floor. "If Senator McConnell had a flood or an earthquake in Kentucky, we would all support him with emergency funding to meet that emergency." 
Though the conference report, which passed the House late last month, also provides $1.1 billion to fight the mosquito-borne virus, Democrats oppose how it's paid for and a provision blocking funding for Planned Parenthood. 
Democrats are demanding that McConnell re-pass the Senate's Blunt-Murray agreement, which has gotten backlash from House Republicans because the Zika money isn't paid for. 
McConnell fired back that "who is playing political games is in the eye of the beholder." 
"As a practical matter, if we were to repass the Senate bill it would not pass the House," he added. 
The rhetorical battle on the floor comes after McConnell and Minority Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidPentagon forming task force to investigate military UFO sightings Kamala Harris makes history — as a Westerner McConnell goes hands-off on coronavirus relief bill MORE (D-Nev.) blocked the competing Zika proposals on the Senate floor on Monday afternoon. Senators have days to try to break the stalemate until they leave town until after Labor Day. 
McConnell has pledged to bring up the House-passed conference report for a second vote this week, though Democrats are showing no signs of caving in the fight. The White House has also pledged to veto the measure if it reaches President Obama's desk.
Reid blasted the GOP strategy on Zika as well as a separate fight on opioid abuse, saying they would face political consequences in November. 
"The Republicans are going to lose the majority of the United States Senate," he said Tuesday. "All you have to do is listen to what the Republican leader had to say today."