Updated 07/30/2010 11:47 PM
Weiner Outraged Over Congressional Failure To Pass 9/11 Health Bill
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Congressman Anthony Weiner expressed disappoint Friday over Congress's failure to pass a measure that would provide health coverage for September 11th first responders, a day after he criticized his colleagues in an emotional tirade.
Only 12 Republicans joined a majority of Democrats in voting for the $7.4 billion measure on Thursday, which inspired Weiner's rant on the floor of the House of Representatives.
Democrats chose to require a two-thirds majority in order to prevent Republicans from attaching amendments, and the bill was 21 votes short of passing.
"We see it in the United States Senate every single day, where members say we want amendments, we want debate, but we're still a no. And then we stand up and say, ‘oh if only we had a different process we'd vote yes.’ You vote yes if you believe yes,” said Weiner. “You vote in favor of something if you believe it’s the right thing; if you believe it’s the wrong thing, you vote no. We are following a procedure. I will not yield to the gentleman, and the gentleman will observe regular order! The gentleman will observe regular order!"
A much more subdued Weiner appeared on NY1's "Inside City Hall" on Friday.
"Frankly, I think that it's one of the things that people see about Washington and they scratch their head. If you can't even put aside partisanship for 9/11 victims, who can you put aside partisanship for?" said Weiner on "Inside City Hall." "So if I was yelling, it was because I know a lot of people who have too much gunk in their lungs from September 11th dust to be able to speak, yet alone yell."
On his Friday radio show, Mayor Michael Bloomberg also lashed out against Congress’s decision, calling it a "disgrace." He said not bringing the bill to a vote is just typical partisan politics in Washington.
"This is an attack on America,” Bloomberg said. “People that went in for rescue and recovery, it’s Americans trying to help Americans, and Congress is unwilling to stand up. They preach patriotism and when it comes down to it, partisan politics."
The bill is named after New York City Police Department Detective James Zadroga, who died of a respiratory illness after working at the World Trade Center site following the terrorist attacks.