Thoughts on Government Shutdown

Thankfully the government shutdown is finally over. President Donald Trump has now signed the Bipartisan bill passed by the House and the Senate about 24 hours ago. Let’s go over a few things.

While the government was only partially shutdown I do not think people will disagree that it is an embarrassment for our country. At first it was not hitting the regular johnny homeowner but but by day 30 it was affecting them. It was also affecting security for the United States Airspace. I will get into this but I think the best part of this shutdown is even the President party stated that they may not be able to hold the line any more for him.

On Thursday GOP lawmakers met with Vice President Pence according to Yahoo News and as such they vented. They were upset that there was no strategy to get out of the shutdown. This shutdown went 35 days which is the longest in United States Government history. Senator Mitch McConnell which I will share my thoughts about later told President Trump himself that he was “it was unclear how much longer he could get GOP senators to hold the line — especially if there were another round of votes to end the shutdown.” I believe that the GOP was starting to feel the heat from their own constituents as I mentioned that it was affecting every American. Soon after these meetings President Trump made 180 degree turn and agreed that that shutdown should be over and agreed with a House passed bill and urged the Senate to take up a vote as soon as possible.

Not every company was willing to work with Federal Employees who were affected. The majority of them were willing to waive late fees. I know of a Homeowners Association who was discussing how they could help and not charging late fees for those affected by the partial Government shutdown. Yes the number is appalling of the number of U.S. Citizens who do not have a “rainy day fund.” Eighty percent of the U.S. workforce live pay check to pay check per an article from The Guardian in July 2018.

On Friday (January 25) the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued a Ground Stop (GS) at LaGaudria Airport in New York due to lack of staffing. The ground stop lasted for about 60 minutes and then went into a Ground Delay Program (GDP). The same day Tampa International Airports were restricted from climbing too far due to meaning they could not fly higher than Flight Level 230 due to staffing and volume per Arundel News Network who sourced a ACTCSCC Advisory.

People wanted to ask how this was making Air Traffic unsafe. Staffing issues in Air Traffic Control towers throughout the nation’s airports and in the various FAA “Center” facilities especially the ZDC or “Washington Center’ will affect security. The aviation inspectors were also affected and as such the necessary inspection that would usually get done were not being completed. Governor Larry Hogan who has been a very outspoken critic of President Trump held a press conference at Baltimore Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport on Thursday January 24 and spoke about what Maryland was doing to help those affected in addition to mention it was affecting Airport Security but also State income per an article from Arundel News Network.

Some food inspections were stopped because those inspectors were not there. How many of us know about the various recalls of popular foods over the past several years? What about that big issue at Chipotle that everyone is surprised that I still eat there? Per NBC News “FDA inspectors are not looking for salmonella in breakfast cereal, E. Coli in romaine lettuce or listeria in ice cream.” This was one of the scariest issues for me. Again I eat at Chipotle probably more than what I should but I will live. Did they not have an issue with E. coli in romaine lettuce with in the past two years? Needless to say I have two young nieces who love ice cream. One of them just recently turned one and as such she does not have a big immune system. Listeria loves the cold unlike other bacteria per the CDC.

Does this not scare anyone?

Now onto Mitch….This man is a career politician. Yes am I a Democrat but I do not vote straight party. Who ever is better to serve in the position wins it for me. For example where I live this past November there were two people running for County Executive. In Maryland this is like the Mayor. These two people were incumbent Steve Schuh and newcomer Stuart Pittman. Was I able to vote one or the other? Nope. I voted for myself. See how that works. I personally had issue voting for both of these persons even though I have met Former County Executive Steve Schuh. Needless to say I was a republican for several years.

How dare Senator McConnell take his marching orders from President Trump. There is supposed to be a checks and balances system in this country. The senator saying that he would not bring up legislation unless he knew President Trump would vote yes on it. Everything that the House of Representatives approved up to Thursday, President Trump issued a veto threat on.

My question is this how many Americans know that the Congress can override a Presidential Veto? Do you? I do but I guess that is because my father was a civics teacher and even though he is retired he and I still talk politics. It would take 2/3 (66%) of both chambers to accomplish it. Both the House and the Senate are just playing party politics and it makes me sick! It makes me feel embarrassed when they do things like this and when they can not pass a full budget since 1997. Lets do some simple math….that is 22 years. Wow I just recently turned 32 years old and that would mean for 68.75% of my life Congress has not done what they are legally required to do.

Continuing Resolutions (CRs) is a way to fund the government that should never be allowed. It should be a full budget. All CRs do is punt the can down the road more times then not. At times the entire Fiscal Year (FY) is funded by CRs. In FY2015-Fy2017 there were only one CR that was used. In FY18 there were 4 separate CRs that were used.

  • Continuing Appropriations Act of 2018 extended funding to December 8, 2017
  • Further Continuing Appropriations Act 2018 funded the government to December 22, 2017
  • Further Additional Appropriations Act funded the government through January 19, 2018
  • Further Extension of Continuing Appropriations Act extended funding through March 23, 2018

You see that that the first one only lasted for 14 days, the second one lasted 28 days. The one that was just passed was for 3 weeks through February 15, right after everyone is spending money for Valentines Day.

What the average person does not understand are two things with shutdowns. Government shutdown will affect everyone to some capacity. Now some of those may not be affected much at all or in a fashion that they can live with but others it might be a major hit to them. Furthermore it is not a guarantee that with every shutdown that employees will get paid. The House and Senate have to vote on legislation to allow this and the President has to sign it or veto it and the Congress can override the veto.

I am not a Trump fan even by the imagination. Are there some things that he is doing right? Yes but there are a lot of things that he is doing that are not good. President Trump stated that he would run our Country like he runs his business. I am not sure if I would want that as he has had six (6) businesses go bankrupt and while it takes a lot to become a billionaire we have a huge debt versus his companies that has run when he started them or overtook them.

My blame goes to both parties. They the congress have to work together and compromise. Did the Dems compromise or did the GOP compromise this time? I will say partially yes but the GOP only did it under direction of the President of the United States. Again where is the checks and balances here? The GOP also in my opinion only did what they did under pressure from their constituents. Why does it have to come down to that?

I am hoping that within the next three weeks that Congress will take their head out of the butt and get a deal to fund the government through the end of September 30, 2019. I then hope they start to to work to a full and balanced budget for FY20 which will run from October 2019 to September 2020.

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