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Health News Florida

House Passes $1.1 Billion Zika Bill; Senate Dems Promise Filibuster

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In an early-morning vote, House Republicans pushed through a partisan bill to deal with the Zika outbreak. But the $1.1 billion measure is a nonstarter with Senate Democrats and the Obama administration. 

The measure was unveiled Wednesday night and approved by a 239-171 vote that broke along party lines. Now, the House-passed compromise measure advances to the Senate, where Democrats promise to filibuster it to death.

The Zika virus is a grave disease that can cause birth defects. The $1.1 billion figure is the amount the Senate approved last month. It contains $750 million in spending cuts, including $543 million in unused funds from implementation of President Barack Obama's health care law.

The GOP measure would not allow funds for Planned Parenthood for birth control services.

A spokeswoman for Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid says Democrats will oppose the bill.