Washington, DC – U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand today released the following statement after it was announced that the bill to make the 9-11 Victim Compensation Fund permanent will be brought to a vote next week in the Senate.
“Eighteen years after 9-11, Congress is finally poised to permanently stand by our first responders for the rest of their lives, and we need to finish the job now. After getting 402 votes in the House, and with 75 cosponsors in the Senate, there are no excuses. Senator Lee’s amendment would only accomplish one thing: make our first responders do this all over again in a few years, which is unimaginably callous. This amendment would force sick and dying police officers, firefighters, and other 9-11 first responders to waste even more of their precious time – away from their families, their loved ones, and their cancer treatments – traveling back to Washington and lobbying Congress to pass this bill for a fourth time. And Senator Paul’s amendment would cut every government program across the board. Every member of the Senate should stand by our 9-11 heroes and vote against these unworkable amendments. The eyes of the nation are on us to stand by our heroes and truly “never forget,” by passing a permanent compensation program, so these men and women never have to spend another second in Washington ever again. We need to stop these political games and pass this bill now.”