9/11 bill up for voteBy S.A. MILLER
New York Post
September 29, 2010
WASHINGTON -- A long-stalled 9/11 health bill is slated for a House vote today, with New York lawmakers crossing their fingers it won't get derailed at the last minute.
The $7.4 billion bill, which would give health benefits to first responders sickened at Ground Zero, has a tortured history in Congress and its fate remains uncertain.
Its sponsors, Reps. Jerrold Nadler (D-Manhattan/Brooklyn), Carolyn Maloney (D-Manhattan) and Pete King (R-LI), were cautiously optimistic it would pass.
A Nadler aide said that they were hopeful for bipartisan support and that it "deserves passage without being bogged down by any political gamesmanship."
King said he was "reasonably confident" it would go through with a solid majority.
The bill was defeated in July in a 255-159 vote, after Democrats raised the threshold to pass it from the usual majority 218 votes to 290, to avoid the addition of amendments.
Capitol Hill insiders warned that Democratic leaders could pull the bill from the schedule at the last minute, or Republican amendments could sink it on the floor.