• Sen. Pat Toomey clashed with Jon Stewart over a healthcare bill for veterans who were exposed to toxic burn pits.
  • Toomey said people in DC sneak things into bills and rely on “pseudo-celebs” to blast dissenters.
  • Stewart responded to Toomey: “I’d rather be a pseudo celeb than pseudo Senator!” 

Republican Sen. Pat Toomey criticized “pseudo-celebrities” on Sunday after he was called out by comedian Jon Stewart for voting against a veterans healthcare bill last week.

The Pennsylvania senator was one of 41 Republicans that voted against the PACT Act on Thursday. The bill would expand healthcare for veterans exposed to toxic burn pits and who have an increased risk of developing cancer and respiratory health issues.

Stewart is a vocal advocate for veteran healthcare and has previously addressed the issue before Congress. After the PACT Act was rejected, Stewart told Capitol Hill reporters: “This is corruption at its finest. And sadly, these are the people that fought and defended their right to this fuckery.”

Stewart also singled out Toomey’s resistance to the bill multiple times, including calling him a “fucking coward” when the bill failed.

Toomey defended his vote on CNN Sunday, saying lawmakers attempted to “sneak in” unrelated items into the bill.

“This is the oldest trick in Washington. People take a sympathetic group of Americans — and it could be children with an illness, it could be victims of crime, it could be veterans who’ve been exposed to toxic chemicals — craft a bill to address their problems, and then sneak in something completely unrelated that they know could never pass on its own, and dare Republicans to do anything about it,” Toomey told CNN’s Jake Tapper on an episode of “State of the Union.”

Toomey continued: “Because they know, they’ll unleash their allies in the media and maybe a pseudo-celebrity to make up false accusations to try to get us to just swallow what shouldn’t be there.”

Toomey never mentioned Stewart by name, but the former “The Daily Show” host circumvented the lawmaker’s insults with a pair of ironic tweets.

“I’d rather be a pseudo celeb than pseudo Senator!” Stewart wrote.

 

Stewart’s second tweet said: “Funny. @SenToomey never called for spending caps on the war…only on the health care for veterans sickened by said wars. Interesting priorities. #PassthePactact.”

Stewart also called out Sen. Ted Cruz over his vote against the veteran’s healthcare bill with a video posted to Twitter on Friday, prompting a response from the Senator. Cruz said the bill was “playing a budgetary trick,” similar to Toomey’s stance.

Watch Toomey’s interview on CNN below:

Representatives for Toomey and Stewart did not immediately respond to Insider’s requests for comment.