Cornyn: Senate could vote Wednesday on Zika funding conference

Cornyn: Senate could vote Wednesday on Zika funding conference
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“I think we may well have a breakthrough this afternoon where we can get to conference, and then I think things will come to a conclusion pretty quickly,” Cornyn said. 
 
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Democrats have been pressuring Republicans to act to approve new funding to fight the virus. 
 
The conference committee would seek to bridge the gap between the Senate’s $1.1 billion measure and the House’s $622 million bill, which Democrats have decried as inadequate. 
 
Sen. Amy KlobucharAmy Jean KlobucharOvernight Defense: US to send 1K more troops to Mideast amid Iran tensions | Iran threatens to break limit on uranium production in 10 days | US accuses Iran of 'nuclear blackmail' | Details on key defense bill amendments Overnight Defense: US to send 1K more troops to Mideast amid Iran tensions | Iran threatens to break limit on uranium production in 10 days | US accuses Iran of 'nuclear blackmail' | Details on key defense bill amendments Overnight Health Care: Democrats attack after Trump revives talk of ObamaCare replacement | Cruz, Ocasio-Cortez efforts on birth control face major obstacles | CVS investing M to fight teen e-cig use MORE (D-Minn.) said earlier Wednesday at a Democratic press conference that the $1.1 billion is a “floor” on what Democrats would support. The White House has pushed for $1.9 billion. 
 
Complicating matters, the Zika funding has been attached to the military construction and veterans affairs appropriations bill. Democrats have called for a vote on a standalone Zika funding bill in order to speed its path to the president’s desk. 
 
But Cornyn said Zika funding would be part of a larger package, “not as a standalone.”
 
While he was optimistic that a conference committee could work out a deal between the chambers, Cornyn said there is no deal yet.
 
“I know that Senator Blunt has been talking to the House, but I'm not aware any conclusion has been reached,” he said, referring to Sen Roy BluntRoy Dean BluntElection security bills face GOP buzzsaw Election security bills face GOP buzzsaw McConnell ups pressure on White House to get a budget deal MORE (R-Mo.). 
 
One major disagreement is whether to pay for the funding, which House Republicans have pushed for. 
 
Democrats have been warning that the clock is ticking.