Tim Kaine accused Donald Trump on Tuesday of ignoring the Zika virus threat, particularly to Florida.
"If you look at what Donald Trump has said about Zika, it's like, crickets," Kaine said while campaigning in Daytona Beach. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have issued an advisory to pregnant women, telling them to avoid an area around Miami's Wynwood neighborhood where Zika has been transmitted locally.
Hillary Clinton's running mate called the mosquito-borne virus "a huge worry," and pointedly mentioned the serious outbreak in Puerto Rico. Many Puerto Rican Democrats live in Central Florida.
"We are really in for a significant public-health challenge if we don't do something about it," he said.
The Virginia senator slammed Congress for failing to fund Zika-fighting efforts, blaming the House for trying to attach a "poison pill" anti-Planned Parenthood amendment to the legislation. Congress, he added, should go into "emergency session and demand that the House pass the bipartisan bill."
National Republicans countered that House Democrats were to blame for not passing the bill.
"With new cases of the Zika virus being reported in Florida every day it is becoming clear that with his party-line vote to block crucial Zika funding Tim Kaine put his loyalty to the Democrat Party over the health of Sunshine State residents," Republican National Committee spokeswoman Natalie Strom said in a statement. "He owes the hardworking people of Florida an explanation for his playing politics at their expense."