Jon Stewart Blasts Lawmakers In Hearing For Sept. 11 Victim Compensation Fund

Entertainer and activist Jon Stewart

Just as Americans "stood together as a nation in the days following September 11, 2001, and just as we stood together in 2010 and 2015 to authorize and fund these vital programs, we must now join forces one more time to ensure that the heroes of 9/11 are not abandoned when they need us most", Nadler said.

Jon Stewart is speaking up against the "shameful" congressmen who skipped a hearing about the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund.

"Behind me, a filled room of 9/11 first responders", Stewart said emotionally.

The former "Daily Show" host has for years championed the cause of the survivors of the September 11 terror attacks, calling attention to the diseases contracted by first responders and others who breathed in the smoke from the Twin Towers. Shameful! It's an embarrassment to the country and it's a stain on this institution.

Noting that behind him was a hearing room full of aging first responders who had made another trip to Washington to fight for health care funding, Stewart said, "This hearing should be flipped". More than 20,000 individuals have suffered or died from cancer, breathing problems and other ailments because of the trauma inflicted on 9/11.

"I would say it's the so-called fiscal hawks", Stewart responded when asked who he believed is holding up proper funding. "Because accountability doesn't appear to be something that occurs in this chamber".

"The plain fact is that we are expending the available funds more quickly than assumed, and there are many more claims than anticipated", said Rupa Bhattacharyya, the fund's special master.

Several members of the NY congressional delegation, including House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler and Rep. Carolyn Maloney, both Democrats, and GOP Rep. Peter King, have introduced the Never Forget the Heroes Act of 2019 to reauthorize the Victim Compensation Fund. It's the one thing they're running out of ... The $7.3 billion fund has paid about $5 billion to roughly 21,000 claimants.

"Your indifference cost these men and women their most valuable commodity: time", he said later on. Alvarez told the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties that, "You all said you would never forget. Well, I'm here to make sure that you don't", Alvarez said to a room of loud applause.

In a simple, but passionate testimony, veteran and retired NYPD detective Luis Alvarez urged lawmakers to reauthorize funding for victims of the 9/11 attacks. "They did their jobs with courage, grace, tenacity, humility. Eighteen years later, do yours!" he shouted. "If it's any comfort to you all, we know this bill is going to pass with an overwhelming landslide majority of the House, maybe unanimous".



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