Former Daily Show host Jon Stewart testified before a Congressional committee on Tuesday to urge Congress to approve the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund.
During his testimony before the House Judiciary Committee, the former TV comedian scolded the legislature for dragging its feet on making the fund permanent to continue to help pay for the medical care of the first responders injured or made sick from their efforts to rescue victims of the 2001 terror attack at Ground Zero in New York City.
Stewart noted that many of the victims who became sickened during the rescue efforts had descended upon Capitol Hill numerous times to lobby for the compensation fund even as they suffered from serious illnesses such as cancer.
“Accountability doesn’t appear to be something that occurs in this chamber…I’m sorry if I sound angry and undiplomatic, but I am angry, and you should be too,” Stewart said, according to C-Span.
Jon Stewart testifies for September 11 Victim Compensation Fund: "Accountability doesn’t appear to be something that occurs in this chamber…I'm sorry if I sound angry and undiplomatic, but I am angry, and you should be too." pic.twitter.com/njxJzSmzSJ
— CSPAN (@cspan) June 11, 2019
The stringer cameras of TMZ caught up with Stewart as he headed into the committee room and the comedian also slammed Congress for refusing to act on the fund.
The victims who rely on the funding have praised Stewart for his tireless advocacy for their welfare.
“I think the efforts of Jon Stewart, the responders, and survivors who have been working the halls are all coming to fruition,” Ben Chevat, the head of 9/11 advocacy group Citizens for the Extension of the James Zadroga Act, told the Daily News. “I think that there’s just general acceptance from Democrats and Republicans that this has to get done and it is getting done.”
Stewart recently praised the Trump administration for its handling of the fund. “The Trump Justice Department is doing an excellent job administering this program,” Stewart said in February.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.