John Feal, 43, disabled demolition supervisor from Nesconset, who started the FealGood Foundation, an advocacy group for 9/11 responders

"I think they [Democrats] will use this [defeat] as a political tool in the November election. They are trying to keep their seats in November and they will use us as a pawn. This should never have been a political issue. The Democratic leadership has failed us. Their moral compass was facing South in D.C. yesterday. . . . They failed us at every level."

Anthony Flammia, 47, disabled former NYPD highway patrolman from Miller Place

"I've got to credit New York's representatives for their passion. . . . We're angry but we're at the point it's just another hurdle. We have to move forward. . . . What it comes down to is that people are dying and getting sicker and people are sinking deeper financially. Nine years is enough. It's a tragedy."

Jon Sferazo, 55, disabled ironworker from Huntington Station

"To this day I still cannot fathom why this had to take a vote. If you see someone on the street injured, do we need to vote to help them? . . . Over 800 people [first responders] have already perished. . . . I have a great deal of aggravation and anger. . . . We're talking about those who gave from their hearts and now they are suffering the consequences."

Marvin Bethea, 50, disabled paramedic from West Hempstead

"It's a major disappointment. Unfortunately this country has forgotten the sacrifice that so many women and men have made for this country . . . I was proud to do my job but if I had to do it all over again I wouldn't do it. We understand why the terrorists did what they did but we don't understand why government is acting the way it is. . . . It's an absolute disgrace."

Glen Klein, 51, disabled former NYPD officer in emergency services unit from Centereach

"I am upset but we didn't expect it was going to pass. . . . We have walked the halls of Congress 40 times in the last two years and educated them [representatives] on things they didn't know, and we've gotten many of them to change their minds. . . . I am very confident the vote will get passed in September. Then we have got to go to the Senate."

Christine Famiglietti, 49, disabled NYPD officer from Bay Shore

"I don't know whose fault it is . . . I am hoping it's not a total washout. There's 900 people who have died already. I have the lungs of a 90-year-old. Maybe we can fight it."

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