April 28th, 2009
03:25 PM ET
5 years ago

President asks Congress for funds to fight swine flu

President Obama also suggested the supplementing of anti-viral stockpiles, and assisting international efforts to stem the outbreak could be good uses of the funds.
President Obama also suggested the supplementing of anti-viral stockpiles, and assisting international efforts to stem the outbreak could be good uses of the funds.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – President Obama is asking Congress for $1.5 billion to fight the current swine flu outbreak.

In a letter to lawmakers on Capitol Hill, the president made the request "at an abundance of caution," and said the funds should be "provided with maximum flexibility to allow us to address this emerging situation."

He also suggested the supplementing of anti-viral stockpiles, and assisting international efforts to stem the outbreak could be good uses of the funds. He added that his administration has "carefully been monitoring the situation, coordinating state and local responses, assessing the risk here in the United States and cooperating with international organizations and health officials around the globe."

Robert Gibbs, Obama's press secretary, read the letter to reporters at the beginning of Tuesday's White House press briefing.


Filed under: President Obama • Swine Flu
soundoff (84 Responses)
  1. Scott the Independent

    yeah after republican Senator Collins had it removed from the stimulus bill as unnecessary PORK.

    Stupid is as stupid does and the average American pays the price.

    April 28, 2009 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  2. Veronica

    Go ahead, Mr. President. Just don't send any funds to Texas – it's a self-sufficient state, apparently.

    April 28, 2009 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  3. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    I love the response time of this President. He evaluates, consults, then acts. Better than the guy in that office for the last 8 years.

    April 28, 2009 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  4. J.P.

    Yes, is there any money available to throw at this problem?

    April 28, 2009 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  5. Donna

    Heck, get us some funding to fight off the swine called the GOP....

    April 28, 2009 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  6. Justin

    Watching how the President and this administration is handling this issue, before it even becomes a serious threat in the US actually makes me feel safe. I feel like if things are handled the way they should be I wouldn't have to worry if I caught it.

    April 28, 2009 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  7. southerncousin

    Knowing the Obama administration the main recipients of these funds will be ACORN, the unions and any business George Soros is connected with and it will point out the need for the ECAF bill.

    April 28, 2009 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  8. George

    Republicans vote no like you have been doing. Don't help Americans. You are so good at turning your backs on Americans. If it is ok with Rush, then vote yes. Don't think for your country. Rush is the man!!!

    April 28, 2009 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  9. Steve, Columbia SC

    Mr President, our citizens, and more specifically your democrat Congress, have given you enough "maximum flexibility".

    Interesting that every new crisis comes with a call for more spending.

    April 28, 2009 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  10. strong

    This swine flu sounds like a hoax, just like all the other 'pandemics' of recent years. Swine flu is flavor of the month now.

    April 28, 2009 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  11. Melissa

    Asking is all well and good but I doubt he'll get it. There's too much politics involved for the good of the people to actually be an issue. And even if he does get it, the Republicans will fight him every step of the way. They aren't interested in whats good for the people.

    April 28, 2009 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  12. Patrick - Indianapolis

    Come on Prez, Don't hop on the 'OH NO NOT THE PIG FLU' bandwagon. Here in the USA we have modern medical technologies like Tylenol, and chicken noodle soup.

    Does anyone else not see the person crying wolf?? SARS OH NO!!! WEST NILE WE'RE ALL GOING TO DIE!!! THE BIRD FLU WILL SURELY KILL US ALL!!!

    Come on. Take some cold medicine and deal. The flu kills old people and sickly people near death already. Pig, nile, sars, bird; its just the flu.

    April 28, 2009 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  13. steve

    Let him find these funds somewhere else in his budget. We have less than 100 cases here in the U.S. That means he's asking for $15,000,000 per reported case. Is America waking up yet?

    April 28, 2009 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  14. dan

    is he also going to blast the drug companies for charging too much for drugs after they spent so much money on research and development to come up with the drugs that he now finds so important?

    April 28, 2009 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  15. Trudy

    Why don't you use some of the money for your elaborate "fly-by" photo-op for this?

    April 28, 2009 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  16. Irma in North Carolina

    Well I wonder if the republicans in congress will object to this. Would not suprise me if they did, they have went against everything else the president has tried to do.

    April 28, 2009 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  17. Anthony R. Seta

    It's a smart idea, I doubt there will be much resistance from the opposition.

    I think that our nation should provide every form of assistance that we can to Mexico in order to fight this possible pandemic. At this time, Mexico is on the front line of this battle. This nation is already suffering from the narco-trafficante crime war and it's governmental agencies need some help. Only the US (and perhaps with help from Canada) is in a position to render tangible scientific and monetary assistance. Mexico is an ally. A large portion of our population has Mexican heritage. Let's extend a hand to a friend.

    April 28, 2009 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  18. Tom Paine

    There's nothing in a $3.5 TRILLION DOLLAR Budget to fight a flu virus? Obama must not be looking that hard.

    April 28, 2009 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  19. Obama Victim

    does he EVER stop asking for money??

    April 28, 2009 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  20. Kevin

    And where does all this money that he keeps asking for come from? Do we just keep printing more or what?

    April 28, 2009 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  21. Too True For You

    Here's where the right wing-nuts start carping "Here he goes again, spending my money" complaining it will benefit illegal aliens and poor people, not just the elite.
    Shoot, Beck will probably say this pandemic was actually unleashed by the Obama administration to punish those who don't endorse socialism. Or Michele Bachman will claim its just a ruse to herd us all into re-education camps. Then Hannity will call for the right wing militias to mobilize so they can shoot the virus down if it attacks their homes. Who'll be the first?

    April 28, 2009 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  22. sandy

    So far, I am very impressed with the way our President has handled this situation with the Swine virus. If I have anything I would really want him to do, is "close the borders" now. Stop air travel in both directions. I listened to Gen. Honore this morning and this was also his suggestion and I certainly agree. Do it now before it's too late. Mexico is a friend and should understand this is being done to proctect both countries.

    April 28, 2009 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  23. AndyL

    Obama has not found a problem that spending can't solve

    April 28, 2009 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  24. Moderate Democrat

    conservatives and Republicans screaming:

    "No, don't save people. let them die, all of them die!"

    in....3-2-1......

    April 28, 2009 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  25. "Typical" Obama

    I don't want one dime of my money going to anyone outside this Country, not ONE DIME BARRY.

    You can apologize all you want for this Country, I on the other hand KNOW and can rattle off hundreds of instances where WE helped EVERY damn Country and all we got in return was scorn and ridicule.

    If one dime goes to help someone other than a US citizen it will further prove how much of an anti-American socialist that you are.

    This doesn't make me anti-world, but PRO-AMERICAN, which every other Country does in times of crisis, THEY TAKE CARE OF THEIR OWN FIRST.

    April 28, 2009 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
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