Saturday, December 18, 2010

Why Is There Opposition to the Zadroga Bill?

The other day, on Facebook, friend of mine asked a mutual friend "How is it that the Daily Show is now beating out respectable news outlets in their investigative reporting?" This was in response to this video from Monday night that I posted on my Facebook on Tuesday morning:

I truly do not understand why anyone would oppose a bill that helps those who helped us on September 11th. This bill is the least that we, as a country, can do to help those men and women who went down to Ground Zero and worked day and night to save lives and bring closure to the friends and families of the men and women who died that day. Oh, and guess how much this will cost you and me? Nothing. The bill will be paid for by increasing taxes on foreign companies. Yet, some fiscal watchdogs in Congress think $0 is too high a price for the American People.

On October 17, 2008, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), on MSNBC's Hardball with Chris Matthews, "I wish the American media would take a great look at the views of the people in Congress and find out are they pro-America, or anti-America. I think people would love to see an expose like that." While doing research for this post, I looked at the House vote for the Zadroga Bill. Guess who was in the "Nay" column? You guessed it: Rep. Michele Bachmann. I am not calling her "anti-American" and I understand that she is very fiscally conservative. But this is helping some of the most pro-American people that have ever lived in the country with funding from sources outside this nation's borders.
Last night, during dinner with my parents, we discussed the Zadroga Bill. My mother asked why the 9/11 first responders were not getting worker's compensation. I proceeded to go to my bedroom to get my laptop and load up an episode of The Daily Show.
This past Thursday night, Jon Stewart continued his crusade for the passage of the Zadroga Bill.

Part 1

Part 2

Like Stewart, I, for no certain reason, want to apologize to those first responders for how this bill has not yet passed.

As a side note, Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) also agreed with Senator Jon Kyl (R-AZ) that it is wrong to have to consider so many bills just around the Holidays. "You can't jam a major arms control treaty right before Christmas. What's going on here is just wrong. This is the most sacred holiday for Christians. They did the same thing last year - they kept everybody here until [Christmas Eve] to force something down everybody's throat. I think Americans are sick of this." Notice how he called Christmas "the most sacred holiday for Christians." I'm guessing, then, Easter and that whole Jesus resurrecting from the dead thing has no importance to Christians. Oh wait. It is the foundation of the whole belief structure for Christians.

I do have good news. Two pieces of it, actually. The media is starting to pick the story (as I am typing, ABC's World News Tonight is reporting on the story). Also, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said the Zadroga bill will come to a vote next week. Still, there is some opposition. Senator John McCain said on the Senate floor, while debating the New START Treaty (my emphasis added), "This is one of the really seminal aspects of whether the United States Senate is going to ratify this treaty or not. To have a time agreement after all of the fooling around that we've been doing on DREAM Act, on New York City, on all of these other issues that's taken up our time." I guess time will tell.


  1. I understand that you're trying to highlight that the Zadroga bill will not be funded by American taxpayer money, but I think your claim that this bill will cost "nothing" is really insincere. You said that foreign corporations will be paying for it, or more spcifically, the bill "would impose a 2-percent excise fee on certain foreign companies that receive U.S. government contracts" according to the IB Times.

    So let's say that on a specific government project, the lowest bid for that project by a foreign corporation would be $100 million. With this tax however, the foreign corporations, knowing that their profits would be less with this tax, would bid higher, and the lowest bid for a project might be, say, $102 million. So where does that extra $2 million come from? I'm guessing the American tax payers.

    That being said, I completely support the Zadroga bill, if it means taxing foreign corporations more or American taxpayers directly, because the heros of 9/11 really do deserve full medical treatment. But this bill has a price, and it's not nothing, so don't be disingenuous and try to convince us otherwise.

  2. I disagree with Matt.

    There have already been 3 1st reponder funds as well as many hundreds more of private assistance via charities. All this will do is further drive home the concept that the federal government is the piggy bank of every special interest group and the safety net for the nation.

    Neither of these are a healthy mindset to foster.