A bill that would provide up to $7.4 billion in aid to people sickened by World Trade Center dust was in danger of stalling in Congress Thursday.
Democratic leaders planned to bring the bill up for a vote using a procedure that requires a two-thirds majority for approval. But it doesn't look like there is enough support to pass it. Mayor Michael Bloomberg called the setback an outrage.
"People who worked down at 9/11, whose health has fallen apart because they did what America wanted them to do...this is an American problem, and Congress should stand up."
The bill's failure would increase the likelihood that the bulk of compensation for sick 9/11 responders will come from a legal settlement hammered out in the federal courts. Under the court deal, workers with respiratory problems would split up to $713 million.