"Science, not politics": Elizabeth Warren blasts Chris Christie on Ebola

The Massachusetts senator takes Christie to task for his mandatory quarantine policy

Published October 28, 2014 8:09PM (EDT)

  (Reuters/Joshua Roberts)
(Reuters/Joshua Roberts)

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren ripped Chris Christie on Tuesday over his Ebola quarantine policy, challenging the New Jersey governor to follow "science, not politics" in combating the virus.

Last week, Christie and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo unveiled plans for mandatory three-week quarantines for any traveler who came into direct contact with an Ebola patient. That policy goes far beyond the Centers for Disease Control's recommendations and sparked criticism that it could discourage health care providers from traveling to Ebola-stricken countries in west Africa, where more than 4,000 people have succumbed to the virus. Christie came under particularly withering criticism over the treatment of Kaci Hickox, a nurse placed under forced quarantine in New Jersey after returning from west Africa, despite being asymptomatic of Ebola.

Christie, however, charges that critics of his and Cuomo's policy are "behind" on the issue.

That prompted a sharp rebuke from Warren. Speaking with the hosts of CBS This Morning, Warren urged Christie to "bring out" the scientists who had advised him on the policy.

"He should bring out his scientists who are advising him on that because we know that we want to be led by the science," Warren said. "That's what's going to keep people safe -- science, not politics. I think that's what's critical."

Warren proceeded to decry cuts to scientific research, an issue many Democrats have highlighted in the wake of the Ebola outbreak.

"Ebola is not new," the senator said. "We've known about it for a long time, and we were putting money into funding Ebola many years ago and the Republicans have cut funding overall for medical research, for the National Institutes of Health, and Ebola has not been a priority," she said. "We can’t just run this country from one crisis to another."

Watch Warren's comments below, via CBS News:

By Luke Brinker

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