Jon Stewart slams McConnell over 9/11 victim fund

Aaron Schwartz

Comedian Jon Stewart went after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Sunday as he continued to push for 9/11 first responders funding, arguing that for years McConnell has used it as a bargaining chip before votes. 

“I want to make it clear that this has never been dealt with compassionately by Sen. McConnell. He has always held out until the very last minute, and only then, under intense lobbying and public shaming, has he even deigned to move on it,” Stewart said on “Fox News Sunday.”

Stewart has been an outspoken advocate for 9/11 first responders.{mosads}

Last week, he shamed lawmakers for skipping a September 11th Victim Compensation Fund hearing in an emotional testimony that went viral.

On Fox News, Stewart said McConnell “has been the white whale” of passing funding for the first responders for years.

“It’s the cynicism that’s displayed by Washington that also causes this situation to be so emotional,” Stewart said. 

“This isn’t a Republican-Democrat issue,” Stewart said, adding that the bill has support across the aisle. 

“Not all Republicans oppose this, but everyone who has opposed it is a Republican,” he added. 

The Hill has reached out to McConnell’s office for comment.

Stewart is advocating for a bill that would expand funding for first responders through 2090. Without passing a new bill, funding will likely run out this year — a deadline Stewart said McConnell has been aware of since August.  

First responders have been dying of illnesses related to the aftermath of the attacks.

“Last week, seven first responders died,” Stewart said on Fox. 

“I think this community is at the end of their rope. I think there’s feeling of disbelief that they cant understand why they have to continually saddle up and ride down to Washington and make these appeals for something that should be simple but is somehow through politics made agonizingly difficult,” Stewart said.

Tags 9/11 Jon Stewart Mitch McConnell
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