White House opposes House Zika bill, calls funding inadequate

White House spokesman Josh Earnest speaks about legislation to fund the fight against the Zika virus during a press briefing at the White House in Washington on May 11, 2016.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest speaks about legislation to fund the fight against the Zika virus during a press briefing at the White House in Washington on May 11, 2016.PHOTO: REUTERS

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The White House on Tuesday said it strongly opposes a House bill to fight the Zika virus, saying its funding is "woefully inadequate" to support the public health response that is needed.

The Obama administration has urged Congress to pass legislation that would direct US$1.9 billion (S$2.6 billion) to fighting the Zika virus that is linked to birth defects including microcephaly.