Entertainment: ‘You should be ashamed of yourselves’: Watch Jon Stewart tear into Congress over 9/11 victims fund - United States: World Trade Center bombings continue to massively kill - PressFrom - US
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Entertainment‘You should be ashamed of yourselves’: Watch Jon Stewart tear into Congress over 9/11 victims fund

21:00  11 june  2019
21:00  11 june  2019 Source:   washingtonpost.com

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Comedian Jon Stewart took members of congress to task on Tuesday, blasting the House Judiciary Committee for its low attendance at a hearing to discuss reauthorizing the Sept. 11th Victim Compensation Fund.

Congress created the fund after the terrorists of Sept. 11, 2001, to anyone injured or sickened in the attacks or in the response process.

“As I sit here today, I can’t help but think what an incredible metaphor for this room is for the entire process that getting health care and benefits for 9/11 first responders has come to,” Stewart told the House Judiciary Committee. “Behind me, a filled room of 9/11 first responders, and in front of me, a nearly empty Congress.”

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Congress relaunched the 9 / 11 Victims Compensation Fund in 2015 with .375 billion to cover claims through December 2020. Stewart watched as Pfeifer, dying from cancer, loaded wheelchairs, including one donated by a responder’s widow, and medications into vans to make lobbying trips with

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The firefighters, police officers and others came to the hearing despite illness and injuries, Stewart said, but some members of the committee chose not to show up. The first responders attended the hearing to advocate for the financial compensation that they are due, Stewart said.

“I don’t know if we have the money, and I’m sorry if I sound angry and undiplomatic,” said Stewart, the former host of “The Daily Show” on Comedy Central. “But I’m angry and you should be too.”

He berated the lawmakers for their apparent hypocrisy, campaigning on first responders’ issues and commending their heroism, yet not acting in Congress to support them.

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Mr. Stewart , the comedian and former talk show host, along with Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and the Senate minority leader, Chuck Schumer, held a news conference Monday to call for a fund to be extended for the lifetime of those who were at ground zero.

Jon Stewart heads to Washington with 9 / 11 first responders to secure Victims Compensation Fund ». First responders, firefighters, police, construction The Justice Department, which has supervised the VCF over three administrations, has done a good job in fulfilling its obligations under the current law

“There is not a person here — there is not an empty chair on that stage that didn’t tweet out, ‘never forget the heroes of 9/11; never forget their bravery; never forget what they did, what they gave to this country,’” Stewart said, then motioned to the crowd of first responders behind him. “Well here they are.”

The fund was most recently reactivated in 2015 as part of the reauthorization of the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, which provides health care and financial assistance to first responders, volunteers and survivors. The Victim Compensation Fund was supposed to allow people to submit claims until Dec. 18, 2020, but the fund’s leadership said in February it would reduce awards due to “funding insufficiency.”

Stewart has been advocating for the Victim Compensation Fund since at least 2010, when he devoted nine minutes of “The Daily Show” to criticizing members of Congress who opposed the Zadroga Act. Then-White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs told reporters at the time that Stewart’s activism may have caused “a break through” on the issue.

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They tried again Thursday with Stewart and did better, visiting with Portman's chief of staff. Pfeifer had sped ahead to corner the Ohio Republican because Stewart and the responders weren't there Portman repeated that he would back the bill if it got a funding stream, although he said it was up to

This video is unavailable. Watch Queue. The James Zadroga 9 / 11 Health and Compensation Act is set to begin expiring next month. Stewart is in Washington, D.C., to knock on the doors of congressmen to make sure the bill is kept alive.

Stewart did not speak from a written statement, like many who appear in front of committees tend to do. At times, the former late-night host raised his voice. He came close to tears. He begged the committee to take their issues seriously.

“They responded in five seconds -- they did their jobs," he said, fighting tears. “With courage, grace, tenacity, humility... 18 years later, do yours.”

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