Oklahoma Republican Senator Tom Coburn will block a bill that would cover the health-care costs for Ground Zero workers, preventing a vote before the Christmas holiday, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Coburn, who is a medical doctor, joins conservatives who do not want to spend the billions necessary to provide medical care to the police officers and firefighters who have gotten ill or may eventually get sick after spending days and weeks on the respiratory poison-filled rubble of the World Trade Center in New York.

The bill’s sponsors, New York Democrats Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, have the votes to get the bill passed, the Republicans can still block the bill because of the filibuster. The House already passed the bill.

Funding for the health-care would come from closing a corporate tax loophole.

The bill is named for James Zadroga, a New York Police Department detective who died in 2006 of respiratory disease that has been linked to his rescue work at Ground Zero.

Jon Stewart has spent days ranting about the Congressional failure to pass this bill thus far.

Coburn’s office can be reached at 202-224-5754 or by fax at 202-224-6008 or by email.

About The Author

John Guilfoil is the editor-in-chief of Blast: Boston’s Online Magazine and the Blast Magazine Network. He can be reached at guilfoil.j@blastmagazine.com. Tweet @johnguilfoil.

6 Responses

  1. herbert albin

    Dr. Couburn
    We all know you are physican. Have you forgotten your HIPPOCRATIC OATH!!!!!!!!.Do no harm??? when Pres. Bush spoke on the megaphone, he promised to help with all the resouces of the federal government. Did you forget Oklahoma City in 1995? It must be do as I do, but not what I say.I amsurprised about your frienda at the A.M.A has not said somthing about your positions not only as a Senator but a doctor. Shame on you Dr. Coburn. What happens if another Timothy Mcvey attacks your good state.

    Reply
  2. Judy Peace

    The simplest test of being a decent human being is taking care of the poor and the sick in your society. The first responders were people that believed that and at the risk of their own lives, took care of the victims of 911. How shameful that you, a doctor, are trying to keep us as a country from taking care of these brave Americans who are, literally, dying for their own acts of compassion. I cannot imagine how you can live with your conscience! For the sake of the soul of our country, please stop this unbelievably cynical political theatre!

    Reply
  3. Susan Howland

    How dare you!? This is so extremely sad. I can not comprehend how a representative from Oklahoma would consider sending the message of turning our backs on the people who responded to 9 11. What message does this send to those who would respond to any future event? Shame on you!

    Reply
  4. michael c

    How dare you block this bill. I cannot believe what I just read. I thought that you being a doctor would make this a no brainer to vote yes. Of course the bill probably has a few flaws, but WHAT BILL DOESN’T? I hope you make the right decision and let this bill pass so these poor people can receive the help they need. I , and I’m sure the entire Country will be watching to see what you do. Merry Christmas to you too. Good God, this is unbelievable.

    Reply
  5. Nona Mills

    Dr. Couburn We all know you are physican. Have you forgotten your HIPPOCRATIC OATH!!!!!!!!.Do no harm??? when Pres. Bush spoke on the megaphone, he promised to help with all the resouces of the federal government. Did you forget Oklahoma City in 1995? It must be do as I do, but not what I say.I amsurprised about your frienda at the A.M.A has not said somthing about your positions not only as a Senator but a doctor. Shame on you Dr. Coburn. What happens if another Timothy Mcvey attacks your good state.

    Reply
  6. corinne

    Yeah, the conservatives and one known doctor who voted to block the bill are obviously selfish, ignorant children who should be treated as such — meaning, they should be ignored! I refuse to validate such speak with my attention.

    Aside from in-hospital treatments, it would be great if there was some way that people could just get medical evaluations outside of the industry since there are apparently a lot of individuals out there who want people to go without health insurance by raping them up the butt in costs.

    It would be awesome if there was some kind of online application that people could use that offered free prognoses that were automatically generated online. People could just take an online quiz where they fill in certain information and an automated response detailing what medication or device works best to alleviate their pain or discomfort could pop up.

    There’s already a similar app: http://mindflashad.com/branding-concept-quiz/posts

    but it does free business branding concepts instead.

    That’s all most doctors or physicians do anyhow – is just look symptoms up in a book. So an automated online application could just do the work for them and save people the trip and money.

    Reply

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