The House of Representatives just approved spending over $3.2 billion dollars for victims/rescue workers from the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center.
From the LVRJ: "The House voted last week to provide medical care for rescue workers and other individuals exposed to harmful debris in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
Lawmakers voted 268-160 to authorize $3.2 billion over eight years to monitor and treat illnesses stemming from toxic fumes and dust released at the World Trade Center site.
Another $4.2 million would be allocated to reopen the compensation fund for victims of the attacks whose illnesses did not become evident until after the fund closed in 2003. The fund closed in 2003, but bill sponsors said illnesses in a number of victims did not become evident until later." ...
Sponsors noted rescue workers who risked their health came from all states. Responders to the attack on the Pentagon and the hijacked plane that crashed in rural Pennsylvania also would be eligible for care.
I don't want to sound harsh, but isn't this is what workman's compensation is for. The workers at the WTC where not volunteers in the sense they were not paid, they were. Yes, there have many illnesses and deaths still associated with 9/11 from workers who worked in the aftermath. But they should be paid for by workman's compensation claims. In workman's comp, the medical bills are paid for and people's salaries are also paid for. So, why is the federal government paying billions more than they should?
Further, in Pennsylvania, the first responders and workers were not subject to the ills of the WTC. They had a hole in the ground to deal with and a plane to remove. Using proper equipment, there should have been no one with a work related illness, especially an illness that pops up a few years later. There have been no reports of any major problems at the Pentagon, as well.
Of course, there were some volunteers in the area- Salvation Army and Red Cross workers, but that is not who the money is going for- it is going to police officers, fire fighters and probably construction workers and truck drivers. But these people are covered by workman's compensation and in the case of fire fighters and police officers, their workman's comp is pretty good.
It should be mentioned that Dina Titus and Shelly Berkley voted for the bill, showing once again, they have no clue about government responsibility.
Further, if this was such an important case, why are they doing this now, right before election day? Why not earlier in the year, last year or in 2008?
So, these seems like another money give away to government and union workers by the Democrats and some Republicans. But at election year, money means nothing. Except for taxpayers, who have to foot the bill.