Punches by Republican senators after voting to suspend aid for military veterans suffering from burn exposure have sparked a storm of outrage.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) was filmed punching Sen. Steve Daines (R-Mont.) shortly after Republicans succeeded Thursday in blocking the PACT Act that would allow soldiers, sailors and Airmen from being exposed to smoldering pits. waste in combat zones must be taken care of by the veterans health care system for related illnesses. Many suffer from cancer.
The GOP’s surprise resistance to the bill was apparently rewarded after Republicans were outscored by Democrats earlier this week to win passage of a sweeping $740 billion package to raise taxes on the wealthy and invest in climate change and health care.
Democrats and veterans groups were furious that the veterans bill was held up by angry Republicans when it was supposed to pass.
“It’s total bullshit. It’s the worst form of over-politicization I’ve ever seen,” Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (DN.Y.) said at a Thursday news conference held by officials. Democrats and veterans.
The ruthless celebration of the punches was particularly difficult for many to bear.
“The most despicable part of it all is watching on the Senate floor Ted Cruz bump his fist and then [the Republicans] patting themselves on the back when they blocked this bill,” former “Daily Show” host Jon Stewart said Thursday on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”
They “celebrated their victory over veterans with cancer. Have a good trip, guys! You finally handed it over to “a great veteran with cancer.” Well done!” he added sarcastically.
There were many more:
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.