In the years since he has left The Daily Show, Jon Stewart has mostly remained out of the spotlight, give or take the occasional cameo on Late Show with Stephen Colbert or Full Frontal with Samantha Bee (or animal rescue). There's been one major exception to that: Stewart has routinely put his celebrity to good use by advocating on behalf of 9/11 first responders.

Stewart returned to Washington today to appear before Congress yet again with several other NY lawmakers to call on Congress to provide additional funding for and to make permanent the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund. And he did not mince words in expressing his anger and contempt that Congress continues to drag their feet on the issue—and that there were so many no-shows for the hearing.

"As I sit here today, I can't help but think what an incredible metaphor this room is for the entire process that getting healthcare and benefits for 9/11 first responders has come to," Stewart said. "Behind me, a filled room of 9/11 first responders. And in front of me, a nearly empty Congress. Sick and dying, they brought themselves down here to speak to no one. Shameful. It's an embarrassment to the country and a stain on this institution and you should be ashamed of yourselves, for those who aren't here, but you won't be because accountability doesn't appear to be something that occurs in this chamber."

You can watch Stewart's entire testimony below.

In his speech, Stewart mentions "Lou," a.k.a. Luis Alvarez, a retired ​NYPD ​detective who was a 9/11 first responded. ​Stewart told the lawmakers that he was about to go into his 69th round of chemotherapy to treat ​his ​liver cancer, but he still showed up to testify today. "We don’t want to be here," Stewart said. "Lou doesn’t want to be here, none of these people don’t want to be here. And they’re not here for themselves. They are here to continue fighting for what’s right."

Choking back tears, Stewart continued: "I am awfully tired of hearing that 9/11 is a New York issue. Al Qaeda didn't shout, 'Death to Tribeca.' They attacked America, and these men and women, and their response to it, is what brought our country back. It's what gave a reeling nation a solid foundation to stand back upon, to remind us of why this country is great, or why this country is worth fighting for, and you are ignoring them. And you can end it tomorrow. Why this bill isn't unanimous consent and a stand-alone issue is beyond my comprehension. And I have yet to hear a reasonable explanation for why." Stewart received a standing ovation at the end.

In February, Stewart appeared before Congress after it was announced that the federal fund that compensates 9/11 victims and their families would be slashing payouts to sick first responders, relatives of the dead, and other individuals who suffered because of the work they did near Ground Zero.

The Victim Compensation Fund was first started in 2001, but has been the subject of several fights for funding in Congress in the subsequent years. Special Master Rupa Bhattacharyya, who runs the Victim Compensation Fund, explained earlier this year that the program had used about $5 billion of its $7.375 billion budget, which was funded by Congress in 2011, to pay 21,000 claims. That would leave $2.3 billion left through the end of 2020. But there remains a pending list of nearly 20,000 people who have not received any compensation, and recent months have seen a "particularly significant increase in claim filings," according to an annual status report.