Last night on The Daily Show, Jon Stewart called on Fox News to address what needs to be done for the  9/11 responders who have a myriad of life-threatening diseases all caused by  the  environmental hazards of 9/11.  Many are sick, have lost their health insurance, jobs, etc.  The Zadroga Bill for 9/11 First Responders was to help with this situation. 

Shep Smith of Fox News can always be counted on to stand up for what’s right, regardless of what political party is pushing what.  Both Shep and Chris Wallace blasted Congress for their inaction yesterday:



 For those without sound, from Mediaite:

Shep begins his rant:

How do they sleep at night after this vote on Ground Zero first responders from 9/11? Are they going to get that done, or are we going to leave these American heroes out there to twist in the wind?

Smith and Wallace never named names Friday afternoon, but did rip the “political” failure. Smith continued to skewer:

“Who’s going to hold these people’s feet to the fire? We’re able to put a 52 story building so far down there at Ground Zero, we’re able to pay for tax cuts for billionaires who don’t need them and it’s not going to stimulate the economy. But we can’t give health care to Ground Zero first responders who ran right into the fire? Went down there to save people? Do people know what this city was like that day? People were walking over bridges they were covered in ash they were running for their lives they were crying their family members were dead. And these people ran to Ground Zero to save people’s lives. And we’re not going to even give them medicine for the illnesses they got down there? It’s disgusting, it’s a national disgrace, it’s a shame and everybody who voted against should have to stand up and account for himself or herself.

It really was high theater. I wanted to get up and high-five both Smith and Wallace for saying what needed to be said.

23 Thoughts to “Shep Smith Agrees with Stewart, Blasts Congress”

  1. e

    who cares what jon stewart or shep smith say or think, any clown can read the news from a teleprompter and suddenly theyre the oracle of delphi? some entity deep in the bowels of the soros purgatory came up with a “hey lets make the republicans look bad, lets throw this up against the wall and see if it sticks”

  2. Wolverine

    No question that those First Responders need the help, and I expect they will soon get it. But after seeing Jon, Shep, and Chris do a contemporary roast of certain people on the Hill, allow me to ask some of the other questions that should be asked. It is highly unlikely that those First Responders found out just last week that they were ill. For the past two years, we have had a House and Senate under majority control of the Democratic Party. That majority has been able to pass, inter alia, a whopping huge stimulus package, a whopping huge health care reform bill, a revamp of the way the financial markets are to be run, etc., etc. So, where has the bill for the relief of the First Responders been during those two years? Hell, where has it been for the last half-decade? And to think that both New York Senate seats and evey House seat in New York City has been in the hands of the Democratic Party all that time. And now we have a roast for the minority Republicans because of something which happened this week? I wonder how those New York Democrats can sleep at night? And where have Jon, Shep,and Chris been for the past two years?

  3. Lafayette

    “For those without sound”-that’s me. Thanks for posting the written version. I didn’t hear Shep yesterday.(sigh) I rarely miss listening to him. This doesn’t seem as fiesty as “we don’t f*^%#@* torture”.

    This is issue is like others, BOTH parties are to blame for NOT doing anything about the first responders. Shame on ALL of them for allowing this to drag on for nearly a decade.

  4. @Lafayette, I put that up there with you in mind. It was pretty feriocious. Just no spittle or profanity.

    However, he didn’t name any specific names nor did Chris Wallace. I don’t recall Jon Stewart naming any specific lawmakers.

  5. Wolverine, I keep hearing this excuse and that is what it is…a partisan excuse. The bill was presented yesterday. Here is what happened, according to CNN news:

    Senate Democrats failed Thursday to win a procedural vote to open debate on a bill that would provide medical benefits and compensation for emergency workers who were first on the scene of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

    The motion for cloture, or to begin debate, needed 60 votes to pass due to a Republican filibuster, but fell short at 57-42 in favor.

    While supporters said they would try to bring the bill up again, either on its own or as part of other legislation to be considered, the vote Thursday jeopardized the measure’s chances for approval in the final weeks of the current congressional session

    Why? Why did did the Republicans block it? What is the reason?

    I don’t give a rat’s ass what happened in the past. Every Republican I have exchanged words about this issue with has thrown it back on ‘the Democrats didn’t do anything.’ More time machine politics. That is an excuse. I am asking why, last week, this bill didn’t start going through the process so these poor people, who gave all, can’t get the help they need.

    I don’t care much for either party but Republicans are making me HATE those Republicans in office–those that I used to just merely dislike because of their own efforts.

    Stop making up excuses for bad behavior. Partisan politics is just ugly and not in the best interest of America.

  6. Wolverine

    Moon, that bill has been in the hopper for a long time. It is one of the few bills on which most people on the Hill could agree with regard to purpose. One of the recent Diane Sawyer segments on ABC pointed out some of the real problems which Shep, Jon, and Chris ignored and which I was driving at — Chris really surprising me because he does not usually fall for this type of emotionalism. Neither the Dems on the Hill — with the exception of Anthony Weiner — nor the White House have made any kind of sustained noise and high visibility effort to push for the needs expressed in this stand-alone bill. Moreover, absolutely no effort was made to come to a compromise agreement on certain aspects of the bill which would have allowed the Repubs to vote for it — and gladly vote for it. It was the arrogance of majority power for all to see. Moreover, it was a bill which simply added more bucks to an already existing program which has been wrapped up in suspicions of mismanagement and lack of accountability for how the money has been spent. So, the answer is just to throw bigger bucks at the problem in the same or a similar context? And, finally, after having been thumped soundly in the mid-terms and deciding to try to jam through everything but the kitchen sink in a lame-duck session, the Dems threw this very important bill into the stew pot. They knew what would happen. Political BS all the way, and the trio of Jon, Shep, and Chris fell for it like rubes just out of the hills. Well, the Dems planned well. Now you are brimming with emotional hate for all those Repubs because they didn’t fall for legislative dirty tricks which should NEVER have been part of a bill as important as this one. That bill, properly negotiated to the satisfaction of most on the Hill, should have been passed long ago. This is exactly what a Tea Party person like myself objects to. These guys in both parties play legislative politics behind the walls of Congress and then come out with the fake emotional blame games which rile up the rest of us. It is, in my opinion, another shameful episode on the Hill. I blame the Dems for the arrogance of power and the dirty tricks here. And I blame the Repubs — not so much for this particular incident but for failing to stand up long ago and call the Dems out openly on this much needed assistance to the First Responders.

  7. kelly3406

    I am opposed to legislation from any lame-duck session of Congress. Lame-duck sessions are the closest that the United States comes to governance without legitimacy. I agree that the 9/11 First Responders should be taken care of — but not by this Congress.

    Why do you think that DADT and the START treaty are being pushed right now by the Democrats? Because outgoing Congressmen and Senators can vote for these measures without regard to the views of their Constituents.

    The Washington Post had a very interesting article today ( ) on lame duck sessions. According to this article, the objective of the 20th Amendment was to prevent lame duck sessions.

    Based on that objective, it would be interesting to see if a court challenge could be used to declare any legislation passed by a lame duck session of Congress to be unconstitutional.

  8. Wolverine

    And let me add one more thing. This blog has tended to offer up Shep as an example of one of the few objective journalists on Fox News. Well, in my opinon, this tirade just moved him into the editorial section. The guy lost it in his emotional response and gave no consideration to the multiple aspects of this situation. That ABC Diane Sawyer segment I mentioned was a much more professional piece. In fact, I watched Chris Wallace’s reaction to Shep’s tirade; and, while Chris didn’t jump all over Shep on camera, it looked to me that he was taken more than a little bit aback by seeing the network’s principal objective anchor throw off the cloak of a true professional and become an op-ed page performer.

    1. @ Wolverine, I will gladly share my identity with you. Email me. It is fairly dull.

      I don’t know that I would necessarily classify Shep as a journalist. I think he reports the news without bias as a rule. The Jon Stewart thing wasn’t necessarily ‘news.’ He reacted to another show about something political. How would you feel about him if he had said that Sarah Palin’s Alaska is a great show or I will sure miss Larry King?

      I feel strongly about the 9/11 responders getting the help that they need. I was glad to see him have one of his Shep fits over it. Mike Huckabee also gave strong commentary on it although not as strong nor emotional as Shep.

      We are not going to agree on the 9/11 Responders bill. The Bill I am looking at was first introduced in May. I believe that is Rep. Weinar’s bill. I don’t care what party anyone belongs to. Those men and women need to be taken care of. I don’t care if we have to print the money in George bush’s basement. It is the right thing to do.

      We all talk a big show about ‘the troops’ and ‘the reponders’ and yet when it comes down to doing the right thing for them…well…the curtain comes down. I don’t fault the Democrats on this one. I do fault the Republicans that voted NO and I praise the ones that didn’t.

      I have a feeling with this new crop in I will have plenty of other reasons to dislike Republicans however. I won’t put all my eggs in one basket. I am already mad at many Democrats also if that helps.

  9. Slowpoke Rodriguez

    Isn’t is odd that we haven’t heard a peep out of the White House about how important this legislation is? Isn’t it funny that it didn’t come up before the lame-duck session? It was passed by the house well before the election. Isn’t it funny how Harry Worthless Warbucks Reid put gambling casino legislation before this on the Senate’s agenda? Hmmmm.

  10. Wolverine

    It is unfortunate, Moon; but that First Responders bill from Weiner, as much as we can all support it in principle for reasons of justice, empathy, national obligation, or whatever, became wrapped up in a much larger issue, that of our mounting deficits and debt. We simply cannot go on printing and borrowing money endlessly and watching that debt continue to mount to historic proportions without inflicting some serious future damage on this country of ours. We have to bite the bullet very hard and make some decisons on priorities and then match our budgeting to those priorities.

    It seems to me that, on a national level and in some instances on a state level such as in California, we have reached a level of budgetary insanity which ignores the most basic principles. We see a problem which needs fixing and we automatically throw money at it — money we really do not have — and totally ignore the longer term dangers we face. What the hey! 70 billion here, 100 billion there. We absolutely need these things now! Who cares where the bucks are actually coming from? At some point this bubble of all bubbles is going to burst in all our faces; and you and I and those First Responders and everyone else are going to be grinding our teeth and asking how we could have been so damned stupid. The only recourse then will be to do what is currently going on in Europe, with the result being an entitlement mentality so deeply ingrained that now-unavoidable budget cuts are met with violent rioting in the streets.

    I am not a rich man. My cash intake is pretty well established at this point and will probably not change. If I want to buy a new car, my choice is going to depend on my ability to squeeze the needed cash out of the budget. I am going to have to make some choices. O.K., so we have to decide between that week at the beach or the new car. Which is more needed right now? Well, of all the things out there in need of moving up on the national priority spending list, it was, in my opinion, that First Responders bill. It just irritates me to no end that we have a bunch of people up on the Hill from both parties who cannot get together on something as basic as this and do a budgetary tradeoff which meets the priority need and still gives us a sensible approach to the deficit and the debt. We need 70 billion for this absolute must? Let us see where we can take those funds from someplace else in this enormous budget where there is a lesser priority and a lesser obligation. What I find to be so effing ridiculous that those people up there seem absolutely incapable of meshing the funding of agreed upon priorities with the need for attention to our mounting deficit and debt problems. What are they waiting for? For Moody to finally drop our AAA bond rating into the toilet before they wake up? What does it say about our elected officials when it is Bernanke at the Fed who has to bite the bullet and dip into monetizing our debt because no one else seems capable of taking action?

    So, yes, indeed, I do fault the Dems and fault them badly. They have shown no macro-budgetary sense whatsoever. They just keep coming up with ways to throw money at the problems without a damned thought for the fiscal future. And when that backfires, they proceed to pull out the weepy, teary, outrage card about those evil Repubs who just don’t care about others. It’s a bull crap act and, in my opinion, a dangerous one for all of us. But the Repubs don’t escape in this either. Why it took something like the Tea Party movement to to wake some of these supposedly intelligent and educated people up is simply beyond comprehension.

  11. Those first resonders who came from all over the country should have been taken care of before all the pay outs. End a war. Stop pouring money into Halliburton and the other contractors and take care of those who went in to clean up. They just went to work doing someting so damn nasty it would probalby give the rest of us nightmares.

    More importantly, I probably wont be able to even have this conversation. If I see a jerk…the first thing that hits me is, there’s a jerk. I might not even know, or care about their political persuassion. Wolverine, I don’t think you are capable of evaluating something just based on its jerk content. No, it wasn’t just the Democrats spending money.

    What on earth do you think happens after a depression? We were on the precipice. I give Bush full credit for stepping up the the plate and I give Obama full credit for following in his footsteps. ‘

    I am not a rich woman either and my income is pretty much set also. I certainly wouldn’t want to have to live through a depression. Did everything work? No. But I sure would prefer to do it the Bush/Obama was than the lets just let it fall way.

    Sorry, I am not ready to give up everything I have to rely on because someone else wanted to let the frigging free markets do their thing. Capitalism is great but every once in a while it needs tweaking. How do I know? People who have a lot more money than I will ever have have assured me that is the case.

  12. Also, these people must be taken care of. It is the national responsibility. If a family member gets sick and the family member cannot afford care, then the other family members get a second job, sell off possessions, make do with less. You don’t just let them die.

    If there is not money to pay for the care these people need then raise taxes dedicated to this cause. If that’s what it takes, then that’s what we should do. After what these people did, we do not turn our backs. We don’t do that to our servicemen and women and we don’t do it to first responders. Support our troops and first responders is a little more than draping ourselves in the American flag and singing some country and western song about patriotism on Veterans Day. It is being there for those who sacrified when they need us.

  13. Slowpoke Rodriguez

    Moon-howler :
    If there is not money to pay for the care these people need then raise taxes dedicated to this cause. If that’s what it takes, then that’s what we should do. .

    Nice quote, there! “I’ll spend as much of your money as I damn well please!” “And if I run out, I’ll just take more!” You’re not Obama’s speech-writer, are you?

    1. We owe those people medical care. I repeat, if that’s what it takes, do it. I think we could probably furlough Congress for a few days to get the money or end a war. Bet we could find it there. What do you think? But if we can’t…pony up.

      We, as a nation, don’t send people off to clean up after what was essentially a war, or fight a war and leave them stranded.

      Is that really what Republicans believe? If we don’t have the money as a nation you are on your own bucko? tough crap. You aren’t going to raise MY taxes.

      Feel free to quote me. Slowpoke, your money is no more sacred than mine is.

  14. Wolverine

    No argument with the need and the obligation here, Moon. Nor with the urgency. But if we continue to ignore that huge fiscal elephant in the room while taking care of our acknowledged obligations, there may come a moment when those little nesteggs you and I have won’t be worth the paper the spreadsheets are printed on. Is multi-tasking now completely beyond the capabilities of this government?

    1. @Wolverine, It can be done in other ways that don’t involve these people. They aren’t who we prove our toughness on. And if we are serious about reducing debt, we might have to open our wallets a little wider and finance some old stuff. 2 wars and a financial melt-down might require that. No one likes higher taxes. Maybe we should have thought about that before we rah rahed off to fight a couple wars. The wars weren’t free.

      Amd since your folks are in like flynn now, I suggest that we reduce not only the salaries of Congress but also the fluff that goes with the job. Maybe tweak that retirement just a bit, for newcomers. Then there is campaign finance.

      Wolverine, you have me confused. Some days you have on a Republican hat and defend those blokes like they are the greatest thing since sliced bread. And I know last year you claimed to be a TTP. Not to be stupid, but what are you? The only thing I know you aren’t is a Democrat.

  15. Wolverine

    Moon, I am myself and I cut my own path. Never been in any party and never will be. Tea Party sentiments but not one who is inclined to parade on the mall waving a sign and shouting slogans. I am not defending any “blokes.” I am just calling for some governance common sense to prevail on both sides of the aisle. When I see a genuine need like the First Responders, I am as ready to ante up as the next person ; but I still insist that what we do has to have some rationale to it and has to give due respect to other major needs and requirements now and down the line. I was heavily involved in some official budgeting in my time and I know the drill— often tough decisions with a lot of people trying to defend their particular slice of the pie. But you cannot afford to lose control of the whole fiscal picture or you will be buying a pack of trouble down the road. I do not think that that is too much to ask, and it is real disturbing to be accused of being “mean-spirited” just because you ask for some common sense applications to whatever it is we are trying to do.

    Morris had some good and very valid points on the subject of what a lame duck legislature should and should not do. Unfortunately, the atmosphere in which we now live makes the whole exercise look like government by lame duck stampede. That omnibus bill dropped into the maelstrom by Harry Reid was the icing on the cake. No furloughs or pay cuts from this kiddo. I just want to chain all those people to their desks until they start giving us a legislature of calm deliberation and common sense and not an elementary school playground at recess. Shoot, the stupid stuff I hear and see coming from the Hill I wouldn’t have seen even going head to head with the KGB in the old days. “I don’t need to read a bill before I vote on it.” Bull crap!!!

    1. Many of the Republicans had been told not to vote for it until the Tax bill went through. I took that to mean quid pro quo.

      I feel very strongly about this bill and these people. Until I saw some of them on Jon Stewart they were just a story. Suddenly I was able to put a face to them and hear what some have gone through.

      On the other hand, our congress is probably better behaved than in most democracies and these are less savage than in olden times.

  16. Wolverine

    And I still think Shep Smith ought to make up his mind whether he wants to be a legitimate news anchor or just another uber-emotional commentator. We need more of the former. We already have the latter up the wazoo all across the political spectrum. I don’t know about you, but I got virtually nothing of substance from Shep’s blubbering other than that he was pissed off. The fact that I had to search the web and get the background analysis I was looking for from a Diane Sawyer news bit on ABC does not reflect well on Shep Smith.

    1. @Wolverine, perhaps Shep will if he ever goes to work for a legitimate news station. For now, he can have an occassional rant and he is so surrounded by bias and commentary, most folks don’t notice. Chris Wallace and Huckabee, the same.

  17. Wolverine

    Well, hah, I do have to admit that I have not seen a Yankee senator get beaten over the head with a cane by a Southerner —- yet.

    1. @Wolverine, I think those early guys did some fisticuffs also. Didn’t a few of them duel also? Too early, can’t think.

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