Emergency session called for by Reid Ribble to address Ebola crisis

Congressman Reid Ribble (R-Wisc.) called for an emergency session of Congress to deal with the ongoing Ebola outbreak on Thursday.

In a letter sent Thursday to House Speaker John Boehner, Ribble noted that the Ebola crisis in West Africa has seen exponential growth and sited the Obama administration’s statement that “the faster we act in the region the better the chance to contain the disease.”

Among Ribble’s suggestions are a bill to immediately ban commercial travel to and from the affected areas and the United States, government-provided transportation of workers and resources to afflicted nations during the travel ban and an increase in the amount of aid to West Africa.

While the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee did hear testimony from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and other witnesses on Thursday, Congress is in recess and most members are campaigning for re-election in their home states. Ribble said the country cannot wait until after the Nov. 4 election to act and urged a return to Washington, D.C.

“The present and growing threat of Ebola is one that, if left unchecked, could inflict lasting and severe harm on not only the United States but upon all nations,” Ribble said in the letter. “More must be done and be done quickly to address this crisis both domestically and internationally, and I urge you to call the U.S. House of Representatives back to Washington for an emergency session to address this issue.”