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Billions Requested

The White House has asked for $1.25 billion in new emergency funding to combat the COVID-19 outbreak, the Associated Press reports. According to the World Health Organization, there are 35 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the US.

In all, the White House proposal calls for $2.5 billion in funding, including that new emergency funding, a transfer of $535 million from an Ebola preparedness account, and funds from other Department of Health and Human Services sources, the AP adds. "[T]he Administration is transmitting to Congress a $2.5 billion supplemental funding plan to accelerate vaccine development, support preparedness and response activities, and to procure much needed equipment and supplies," White House budget office spokesperson Rachel Semmel says in a statement, according to the AP.

Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), the speaker of the House of Representatives, called the proposal "long overdue and completely inadequate to the scale of this emergency," as CNN reports. It adds that Pelosi said there would also be a House funding package to address the outbreak.