Funding to combat Zika fails to advance in Senate

A 4-month-old baby born with microcephaly is held by his mother in front of their house in Olinda

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Funding to battle the Zika virus failed to advance in the U.S. Senate on Tuesday, as Democrats blocked a Republican proposal that they said would short-change the challenge posed by the mosquito-borne virus as well as other health priorities.

The proposal to provide $1.1 billion in funding, which has already passed the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, got 52 votes, well short of the 60 votes needed in the Senate to clear a procedural hurdle. It was unclear when Congress would revisit the issue.

(Reporting by Susan Cornwell; Editing by Frances Kerry)