Jon Stewart delivered a heartfelt speech Tuesday after the Senate passed a bill reauthorizing the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund.
Stewart joined first responder John Feal and Joseph Zadroga — father of the late NYPD detective James Zadroga — at a press conference, where he explained: “This has been the honour of my life, to work with the men and women behind me.”
The former “Daily Show” host continued, “They lifted this 9/11 community on their shoulders and they carried them home, and I will always be so proud to have been associated with it. We can never repay all that the 9/11 community has done for our country but we can stop penalizing them.”
Stewart went on, “Today is that day that they can exhale. Unfortunately, the pain and suffering of what these heroes continue to go through is going to continue.
“There have been too many funerals, too many hospices, and these families deserve better. I’m hopeful that today begins the process of being able to heal without the burden of having to advocate.”
Stewart has been fighting to secure the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund for months, with him previously pointing out that 45,000 people now suffer from chronic health conditions and more than 10,000 were diagnosed with cancer following the horrific attacks.
The bill passed 97-2 in the Senate Tuesday; it now moves to Donald Trump’s desk. The president is expected to sign it to make the extension official.