Saturday, December 11, 2010

GOP blocks 9/11 first responders bill; ABC, CBS, and NBC ignore the story

It's been a very busy time around here, but I wanted to take a few minutes to alert others, to fellow bloggers, and those of conscience regardless of your political philosophy, of a tragedy that's ongoing  and the lack of response by our government that should be labeled a national disgrace

First responders to the September 11, 2001 tragedy are dying at an alarming rate, and our elected officials are letting it happen.

And, according to MediaMatters contributor Eric Boehlert NONE of the news broadcasts of ABC, NBC, and CBS covered the story of the Friday December 10 vote in the United States Senate of the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010 . This bill had a price tag of $7.4 billion, and would have been set up to cover the medical expenses of the heroic first responders to the attack on New York's World Trade Center, many of whom have had medical problems linked to the toxic atmosphere in aftermath of the tragedy. These were first responders from New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut, and later from other areas of the United States.

The bill made it to the United States Senate yesterday.....and it was killed by a Republican filibuster in a 57-42 vote to begin debate. Sixty votes were needed to move forward.

Republicans said that the cost of the $7.4 billion, a mere fraction of the total cost of the Iraq War, was too high. The vote went along party lines.

The GOP leadership has made it clear that no new business will be considered until the extension of the Bush era tax cuts to even the wealthiest Americans is finalized.

The Republican Party, which at every opportunity has wrapped itself in the American flag and preached God and country, are now telling heroes of 9/11, those who came to the aid of their country when it was needed out of sense of purpose and duty, that they have to wait until the rest of America gets a tax cut before they will raise a finger to help. And then they'll try to blame Democrats for the stalemate.

Sadly, I think this lack of response and empathy for the first responders is part of a pattern of our society, our media, and our government, to distance themselves from 9/11. The public wants to forget. The news media sees it as an old story. And there are those in the federal government who don'twant to deal with the first responders because it might involve paying for the medical expenses of those who need to get those tax cuts so a zillionare can get his new yacht.

Cancer schmancer....

To the GOP senators who say "we don't have the money" I say- in this cleanup up version- that's bullcrap.

Find it. For once, do the right thing. Country first, heh? It's just one big lie that you sold on the American people in last month's midterms.

The GOP's stance on this bill is nauseating, disgusting....and cowardly.

The following excerpt is from the statement of New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand.

"The idea that tax cuts for millionaires would derail this legislation is simply outrageous and offensive," she said. "The men and women who rushed to the burning towers and worked for hundreds of hours on the pile did not delay and the Senate should not have delayed either, certainly not to give tax breaks for millionaires. We should not have to wait for tax deals to do what's right."

I want to take a second to point out that locally, some in the New York City area media have done much to keep the story of the plight of the 9/11 first responders alive. In particular, PIX 11 has been updating the story and doing updates on air and online.

Click the link below for Eric Boehlert's story on the vote....and note his update- if you wanted to know how the Senate vote went on this bill yesterday don't bother watching Brian, Katie or Diane....the DAILY SHOW with John Stewart covered it.

GOP blocks 9/11 first responders bill; ABC, CBS, and NBC ignore the story


Sue said...

I just shake my head anymore. It's a sickening thing the rethug party is...
I knew about this vote because I'm a C-Span junkie. This is why we dems can never stop speaking out, if we do we'll all succumb to the thuggery that is the republican party. I despise them...

Hugh Jee From Jersey said...

Sue- I agree about the hypocrisy of the Republicans on denying these people a chance to live while pontificating about their damned imaginary "death panels".....but the Dems could have done more as well.

I don't think Lyndon Johnson or Bill Clinton would have left these first responders wallowing in limbo for as long as they have. I like the Prez, but this is another area where he needed to show some leadership and twist some arms, and if he got "no" for an answer, the guilty party needed a public dressing down for being the miserly cowards that they are.

Either that or have Tony Soprano visit 'em and tell 'em to pay up or that's arm twisting!

JP said...

Of course the press corpse (as I like to call them) ignored the story. They were busy covering important things, like Sarah Palin's latest Tweet!

The fact that the only true investigative journalism being practiced in this nation is being done by a comedian speaks volumes.

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