Obama Planned To Cut CDC Budget For Public Health Preparedness And Response

Patrick Howley Political Reporter
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President Obama proposed to cut the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) funding in his fiscal year 2012 budget proposal.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is currently blasting out ads accusing Republicans of voting to cut CDC’s Ebola-fighting capabilities in February 2011 by voting for a bill to cut $60 billion from the federal budget, including from the CDC, in anticipation of the fiscal year 2012 budget battle. The House passed the bill on Feb. 19, 2011, but the bill never passed the Senate.

But the Obama administration proposed to cut CDC funding, including for public health preparedness and response, in its very own budget proposal released the very same week as the House vote.

Obama’s original budget plan for fiscal year 2012 cut funding for a CDC public health emergency preparedness program by $72 million. The proposed cuts would have taken money away from municipal and state health departments to hire health workers and monitor for public health hazards and disease outbreaks.

The CDC budget plan (p. 40) lists vast “Decreases” in funding for categories including public health preparedness and response, including the Public Health Emergency Preparedness Grant Program, as well as environmental health, chronic disease prevention, public health scientific services, and occupational safety and health.

Obama failed to pass his original budget plan, and Republican House budget plans also failed, leaving the United States government operating on continuing resolutions throughout that election year.

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