Tags: Ebola Outbreak | Inhofe | Ebola | troops | Liberia | funds | Pentagon

Report: US Ebola Funding on Hold as Sen. Jim Inhofe Demands Answers

Wednesday, 24 Sep 2014 09:52 PM

Sen. Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma wants to know how the Pentagon plans to protect U.S. troops from contracting Ebola before he will approve sending a military force into western Africa to help fight the disease, the Associated Press reports.

The ranking Republican on the Armed Services Committee, Inhofe has used Senate rules to put a hold on an emergency Ebola spending measure until he gets answers about troop safety and other details on the military-led operation, the AP reports.

"The Pentagon has been less than forthcoming in providing answers, with a lack of planning on the front end of the operation," Inhofe said and AP reported.

President Barack Obama has asked Congress for $1 billion to be redirected from the Pentagon's Afghanistan budget to fund a contingent of 3,000 troops that will go to Africa with health care workers and disease-fighting medical gear.

The Ebola virus has killed more than 2,500 people in western Africa since its re-emergence this year. Officials with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warn Ebola could infect up to 1.4 million people this year without quick action to contain it.

Because of Pentagon rules, when funds are moved from one account to another, both the top Republican and the top Democrat from the House Armed Services Committee and the Senate Appropriations Committees, must each sign off. This rule allows Inhofe, who has been to Africa on numerous occasions, to insist on first seeing a comprehensive plan to protect U.S. troops.

The House has approved a $50 million first installment, but House Appropriations Committee Chairman Harold Rogers, R-Ky., told the AP that "it is imperative that any U.S. efforts are conducted in a clear and transparent manner" consistent with "the proper use of taxpayer dollars … and the protection of the health and safety of American military and civilian personnel abroad."

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Sen. Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma wants to know how the Pentagon plans toprotect U.S. troops from contracting Ebola before he will approve sending a military force into western Africa to help fight the disease, the Associated Press reports. The ranking Republican on the Armed...
Inhofe, Ebola, troops, Liberia, funds, Pentagon
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2014-52-24
Wednesday, 24 Sep 2014 09:52 PM
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