Clinton vs. Giuliani On 9/11
by Jeff Dinelli
Sen. Hillary Clinton has seemingly stepped into Mayor Giuliani territory on the health dangers following the 9/11 attacks. The Mayor has been criticized for prematurely declaring the air quality safe around Ground Zero. In May a firefighter who had developed cancer for his work as a first responder showed up in midtown Manhattan at a Republican fund raiser and complained about Rudy failing to warn workers of the health hazards, which made national news. In June, the Rudy camp was scrambling after former Bush EPA head Christine Whitman said Rudy stopped her efforts to require Ground Zero workers to wear respirators. In July, the Uniformed Firefighters Association of NY's president vowed to fight against Rudy's campaign for assuring air safety while many firefighters contracted major respiratory diseases. Firefighters again protested Rudy's August announcement that he would attend this year's commemoration of the attacks. Hillary will be attending. Her legislation in 2001 earmarking $12 million for screening cases potentially related to Ground Zero related illnesses is widely considered the point when the issue began to get major attention. While campaigning with his wife, President Bill Clinton shared a story from a NYFD captain:
Talking at a Concord, N.H., rally on Sept. 2 about a caddy who recently detained him on a putting green, Mr. Clinton paraphrased the caddy as having told him, “‘In my real life, I am a captain in the New York City Fire Department.’ He said, ‘On 9/11, that terrible day, when we went down there to do our duty, and some of us were dying and breathing all that stuff, your wife knew immediately—immediately—that many of us would get sick and some of us would die because of what we breathed doing our duty on that day and the days after.’”
“‘And she began to fight for us on that day and she never stopped. And when the government denied repeatedly for months and months and months, over a year, that anything could possibly happen to us because of what we breathed that day, she just kept standing up for us. And what I want you to know is that some of us who would have died lived because of her fight. And those who died, their families can live in greater dignity because she fought for them. Now most of us firefighters, we thought that we were Republicans, we like to elect tough talk and everything, but when the chips were down, she was there.”
Yesterday Hillary hammered the EPA on failures during the cleanup of Ground Zero.
"The EPA and the Bush administration denied the evidence, dragged their heels, and failed to produce a real cleanup program despite the dangerous poisons that have stolen New Yorkers and others health and even their lives,” said Clinton.
In other campaign news, Barack Obama laid down some suprisingly heavy criticizm of Hillary's attempt to reform health care in 1993. Obama apparently believes the effort was made without public input, and that he would do a lot better. Details are sketchy at best, in his attempt to downplay a pioneering effort made against all odds by the former First Lady.
And finally, what if a Republican candidate for President held a rally and nobody showed up?