Sunday, January 31, 2010

'My Husband Was an Ardent Supporter of His'

Since we noted Barack Obama's lack of support for the 9/11 health bill the other day we've noticed a curious lack of coverage of the story, especially from the left, folks who would be freaking out if George W. Bush was so callous. Well, at least one of those affected, and an Obama supporter at that, has gotten the message.
Jennifer McNamara wants to honor her late husband's dying wish and give the city firefighter's badge to President Obama.

Only, she's no longer sure she should.

Or that John McNamara, who spent 500 hours at Ground Zero and died last August of cancer at the age of 44, would think Obama still deserves it.

Her problem: She and her husband believed in the President, voted for him, and believed he would ensure the feds passed a law to permanently care for others who answered the call after 9/11.

She began having doubts in December, when key politicians backed away from promises to pass the funding. She went to the Daily News for help reaching the White House to explain her agonizing dilemma.

"I wish he would just support this," McNamara said of the President. "Then I could give him the badge in good conscience. I'd like to know that it's meaningful to him."
Maybe she should package it with a basketball. Then he might notice.
But the simple, powerful gift of his badge to the President may be beyond her.

"It is the one thing on my list of John's that he asked me to do that, unless there is a change in the administration's position, that I will not," she said.

She still holds out hope, and the White House reaffirmed support for 9/11 families Saturday. She has a hard time imagining that a man like Obama worries more about the cost of helping the people who responded to Sept. 11 than he does about the people.

"My husband was an ardent supporter of his," she said, her voice cracking with emotion. "I don't know how I explain to my 3-year-old son that his President doesn't care about his father and others like him. How do you say that?"

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