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Jon Stewart Set To Storm Deadbeat Congress With Sick 9/11 Responders Demanding Healthcare

Jon Stewart, the former host of the Daily Show, is a vocal supporter of 9/11 first responders and is fighting hard to have the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act reauthorized by Congress.

Following 9/11, a large number of first responders became ill and started dying of respiratory ailments. Law makers recognized this issue and passed a law that provided financial assistance to families that were faced with staggering hospital bills.

The bill is set to expire next month, but Stewart has decided to march on Congress with over 100 first responders on September 16.

Occupy Democrats Reports:

The James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, named for a New York City police officer who died of a respiratory disease linked to his participation in rescue and recovery operations after the World Trade Center was attacked, came into being in 2010 after Congress was finally shamed —including by Stewart, who spent his final show of 2010 razing lawmakers for their uncaring attitude toward those responsible for dealing with the aftermath of the greatest tragedy in our nation’s history — into passing the legislation that would provide thousands of first responders with treatment for their injuries and compensation for their economic losses.

Unfortunately, the legislation is due to expire in this Congress, with the phase-out beginning next month — an issue that could leave many families without much-needed financial assistance. Stewart has joined with lawmakers and first responders who wish to avert catastrophe by reauthorizing the bill.

This time, instead of humiliating lawmakers on his show, the comedian will be taking a more direct approach. Stewart will join 100 first responders and walk the halls of Congress on September 16 to reason with an oddly-reluctant Congress in person.

To make matters worse, the $2.75 billion  Victims Compensation Fund — which hemorrhaged $90 million because of the “Sequester” in 2013, is set to end on October 3, 2016. Anyone diagnosed with a 9/11-related illness or cancer after that date will not be eligible for assistance.

“This is such bulls**t. It’s insane,” Stewart told Gillibrand during a Daily Show interview — and Stewart’s vow to assist in keeping these programs alive is not of small import to first responders.

“This is such bulls**t. It’s insane,” Stewart told Gillibrand during a Daily Show interview — and Stewart’s vow to assist in keeping these programs alive is not of small import to first responders.

“I have no role models, no heroes, but Jon Stewart comes as close as possible to that,” said John Feal, founder of the FealGood Foundation, a 9/11 advocacy group. “I like to think we pitched a good eight innings, and we called on Jon, who was our Mariano Rivera, to close it.”

Citizens for the Extension of the James Zadroga Act, whose purpose one can easily guess, has listed lawmakers who have no pledged their support — and it doesn’t look pretty on either side of the fence. Surprisingly Republicans, who reference 9/11 almost as much as they do Benghazi, offer little support to the reauthorization act– though Democrats do seem more willing to lend a hand in getting the bill to pass.

“Jon Stewart and our first responders shouldn’t have to be in Washington walking the halls of Congress to keep the health care program running that our heroes need and deserve,” Gillibrand told the Huffington Post. “Congress should do the right thing and treat our 9/11 heroes who answered the call of duty with the same dignity and respect as our veterans.”

“We’re asking for a permanent bill, but lets not kid ourselves,” Feal said of the proposed legislation. “There’s nothing permanent about 9/11 responders. We’re all going to die off.”

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