The 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund bill has sailed through both chambers of Congress and is on to the president’s desk where it will likely be signed into law. But comedian Jon Stewart isn’t quite done with Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.), one of just two Senate Republicans who opposed the bill on the grounds of budgetary concerns.
Stewart claimed in an interview with CNN on Wednesday that he and victims fund advocate and 9/11 first responder John Feal had been unable to get a meeting with the offices of Senator Paul and Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah).
“You can debate us any time Rand Paul,” Feal said. “I’d love to debate you on the merits of this bill and you have your merits and I’ll take mine.”
“And you can show up if you want,” Feal added, gesturing towards Stewart.
“I won’t show up,” Stewart fired back. “He called me a guttersnipe!”
“I have a mind to call him a scallywag! And a ragamuffin! I’ll escalate this,” Stewart said, mocking Paul’s attack on him.
Watch the video below, via CNN:
Paul lobbed the “guttersnipe” remark at Stewart in an interview with Fox News ahead of the final Senate vote on the bill. Both Paul and Lee have accused Stewart of misrepresenting their positions on the bill — the two have said they support the bill but insisted the cost be offset with other budgetary cuts ahead of final passage.
“People need to wake up and not be so, sort of overwhelmed by celebrity that they take out-and-out falsehoods and ad hominem attacks from — really a guttersnipe like Jon Stewart,” Paul said at the time.
While the two had harsh words for Paul and Lee, Feal offered thanks to Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) for meeting with them on the bill.
“Mitch McConnell is a human being, and I thank him for that,” Feal said as Stewart nodded. “And while we’re never going to agree on our politics, Mitch McConnell was honest and straightforward after that meeting that we had with my team, and I thank the Senate Majority Leader.”