GOP Senate candidates seize on Ebola

Republican Senate candidates are redoubling their focus on Ebola to indict the Obama administration in the final two weeks of the midterm election campaign.

Virginia's Ed Gillespie became the first GOP hopeful to release a detailed statement on Ebola Wednesday, outlining eight steps he said the government should take to protect Americans from the virus.

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Gillespie urged President Obama to fire Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Tom Frieden and strengthen oversight of the military mission against Ebola.

"The administration's response to the threat of Ebola has been very weak and does not inspire confidence," Gillespie, a former Republican Party chairman, said in a statement.

"My policies offer clear cut solutions to this serious threat to our public health and safety. The time for talk is long gone; it's time for decisive action."

Gillespie, who is trying to knock off incumbent Sen. Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerSenate Democrats want Warren to talk costs on 'Medicare for All' US ban on China tech giant faces uncertainty a month out Lawmakers set to host fundraisers focused on Nats' World Series trip MORE (D-Va.), seized on the Ebola issue this month after two Dallas nurses were diagnosed with the disease.

Another Senate candidate, Republican Dan Sullivan in Alaska, is also using Ebola to bash the administration. He called the federa response "reactionary" and "typical of [Obama's] 'damage control presidency' " in a statement Wednesday.

In Georgia, meanwhile, Republican David Perdue, who is squaring off against Democrat Michelle Nunn, said the administration's "lack of leadership ... keeps Georgia at the epicenter of the Ebola crisis." The CDC is headquartered in Atlanta.

Perdue also blasted Obama's appointment of Ron Klain as Ebola czar.

The rise in Ebola as a campaign issue is taking place as federal health officials race to implement new measures to lower the risk of another U.S. outbreak.

The administration says it will not take the GOP's preferred step of imposing a travel ban from West Africa, arguing the move would backfire and only worsen the epidemic.

Instead, officials are requiring all passengers traveling from Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone to enter the Untied States through one of five airports, undergo a health screening and monitor their temperatures for three weeks.

The final move is designed to ensure that anyone who develops Ebola-like symptoms is immediately isolated and tested for the virus. It was announced Wednesday and will take effect next week.