Jon Stewart tries the impossible: shaming Congress

“The people of Congress are not as good people as the people who are first responders.”

With that brick, Jon Stewart showed again last night why his retirement has created such a vacuum of moral authority in the national dialogue.

Stewart returned to the Daily Show last night to call attention to Congress’ refusal to extend health care benefits to workers at the World Trade Center site.

The programs for tens of thousands of police officers, firefighters, construction workers and other workers will expire next year. Efforts to extend them have stalled.

Stewart appeared on the program after taking part in a rally for the victims at which one worker promised civil disobedience if the program isn’t extended by the time it runs out in February.

“I’m tired of going to funerals and explaining to widows that help will be on the way when Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan decide to do the right thing,” John Feal said.

Last week, Stewart accompanied “these heroes” to Washington where they tried to get some help from those who walk the hallowed halls.

None of the politicians had the courage to step outside their office to meet the people who were sent into the toxic ruins.

Scroll to 8:35 in the video.

(Video link)

It was like old times on The Daily Show; Jon Stewart providing illumination on important stories the mainstream news organizations couldn’t care less about.

For the record, senators Klobuchar and Franken have signed on as co-sponsors. All Democrats in the state’s congressional delegation support the legislation. Republican Tom Emmer supports the legislation. Republican congressmen Kline and Peterson have not endorsed it.