The former “Daily Show” host Jon Stewart appeared at a nearly empty U.S. Congress Tuesday to discuss the immediate reauthorization of the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund.
What We Know:
- Only five out of the fourteen members of the needed Judiciary subcommittee were present, with Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler and four other members hearing the testimony of Stewart and the 9/11 first responders in need.
- “It’s an embarrassment to the country and a stain on the institution and you should be ashamed of yourselves, for those who aren’t here, but you won’t be because accountability doesn’t appear to be something that occurs in this chamber,” Stewart stated on Tuesday.
- The 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund was initially active for only two years and has donated more than $7 billion dollars to help the deceased or those immediately injured that day.
- However, there are numerous first responders who are just now discovering the deadly effects of the day on their bodies and the fund is running dry.
- Even though in 2015 Congress added $4.6 billion in funding, it is now estimated that the fund will need as much as 11.6 billion dollars to be able to help everyone in need. The new bill will keep funding going until October 1, 2090.
- One of these people includes retired NYPD detective Luis Alvarez, who was about to begin his 69th round of chemotherapy for liver cancer.
- Due to Stewart and the first responders’ powerful testimonies, the House panel unanimously passed the bill Wednesday.
- It is expected to pass in the House and only Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell – who told reporters he “hadn’t looked at that lately” – and President Trump stand in the way.
Shoutout to Stewart for bringing awareness to this issue!