After having made promises to fight for the cause of 9/11 first responders, Jon Stewart followed through and took to the Capitol to make their case heard. Stewart called on Congress to pass the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Reauthorization Act of 2015. The act is responsible for providing health care for many first responders from that tragic day.

Stewart was clear that it is ridiculous that he had to appear in Washington D.C. at all.

“I’m here today basically to apologize,” said Stewart. “I want to apologize to all the men and women, the first responders, that you had to come down here today. I’m embarrassed. I’m embarrassed for our country. I’m embarrassed for New York. I’m embarrassed that you, after serving so selflessly with such heroism have to come down here and convince people to do what’s right for the illnesses and difficulties that you suffered because of your heroism and because of your selflessness.”

“Nobody had to lobby you to rush to those towers that day,” Stewart continued. “I was living in downtown Manhattan, and I can never repay the debt to the first responders who came down and brought stability and humanity, not just to lower Manhattan, but to all of New York City, and to the entire country. And so I am sorry, and I apologize, and hopefully we’ll never have to do this again.”

Watch Jon’s opening remarks below.