A top Senate Republican is holding up the White House’s request for roughly $1 billion to fight Ebola in West Africa, according to a Wednesday report

Senate Armed Services Committee ranking member James Inhofe (Okla.) allegedly wants more detail from the administration on how the request would impact the defense budget.

{mosads}The funds are set to be “reprogrammed” from an account that would have been spent on the war in Afghanistan, according to the Associated Press, which first reported the hold.

Inhofe asked the Obama administration for more detail on how it would protect military personnel who come in contact with Ebola as part of the response effort, the AP says. 

House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) made a similar request of the administration after approving the use of contingency funds for Ebola on Wednesday. 

His approval is a victory for the White House and a sign the funding will move forward. 

Nonetheless, the requests for more detail could throw a wrench in the White House’s plan to dramatically ramp up the fight against Ebola — if they take up valuable time. Officials have warned that, without immediate “speed and scale,” any efforts to curb the disease’s spread will be quickly overtaken.

President Obama announced a “major increase” in the U.S. response last week with plans to send troops, build field hospitals and train local healthcare workers.

Though the effort came later than some advocates wanted, global health officials have welcomed new U.S. actions, which appear to have spurred additional help from Europe and Asia.

Centers for Disease Control Director Tom Frieden said Wednesday that Obama’s announcement is “exactly what is needed to reverse the epidemic” but warned that “rapid” implementation is necessary to avoid up to 1.4 million Ebola cases by January.

A request for comment from Inhofe’s office was not immediately answered.

This story was updated at 5:22 p.m.

Tags Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; CDC Ebola Hal Rogers Tom Frieden
See all Hill.TV See all Video

Most Popular

Load more


See all Video