(WBRE/WYOU) — The U.S. Senate has voted to ensure the 9/11 victims compensation fund never runs out of money.
The bill passed by a 97-2 vote and funds care for 9/11 victims and their families until the year 2092. The vote comes after intense lobbying from ailing 9/11 responders, including one who died shortly after testifying before Congress last month.
Many responders became ill with cancer and respiratory diseases after spending months in the debris pile at the former World Trade Center site. And now they’ll never again have to lobby Congress to fund their care.
“The eyes of the nation are looking at this chamber today to see if we finally will stand by our 9/11 heroes for the rest of their lives,” Democratic New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand said.
“It is perhaps a historic anomaly that this bill appropriates unlimited funds for a virtually unlimited time period,” Republican Kentucky Senator Rand Paul said.
Republican senators Mike Lee of Utah and Paul voted against the bill after offering amendments that failed. Lee wanted a 10-year term, instead of making it indefinite and Paul wanted offsets in other spending.
President Trump is expected to sign the legislation Friday afternoon.