Posted by: JanF | October 1, 2013

Guess what? The Government is closed … but Obamacare is OPEN

#GOPshutdown = #GOPfail

The much ballyhooed “GOP civil war”* turned out to be 6 guys with rusted flintlocks as the Republican House terrorists voted to send the Continuing Resolution bill to keep the government funded back to the Senate with more Obamacare hostage-taking amendments. The Senate rejected that bill, demanding a clean CR.

House “leadership” met to hatch a plan to send the amendment festooned CR to conference:

UPDATE September 30, 10:53 p.m. ET:
House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy’s office issued the following whip alert announcing a late-night vote on the above plan:

The House will follow regular order and consider a rule that adopts a motion insisting on our last amendment and requesting a conference with the Senate. This will send the CR, our amendment, and our request for a conference back to the Senate.

WaPo – update 11:20 p.m. ET:

The House Rules Committee just voted to approve House GOP leaders’ plan for a conference committee, but it did so without Democratic support.

The vote was 7-4 along party lines, according to committee chairman Pete Sessions (R-Texas).

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) refused to entertain the conference committee plan :

“We will not go to conference with a gun to our head,” Reid said late Monday night on the Senate floor. “The first thing the House has to do is pass a clean six-week C.R. They have that before them they can do that right now.”

Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), Senate Budget Committee Chair (via TPM):

After blocking Senate Democrats’ attempts to start a budget conference 18 times over the past six months, Republicans are now scrambling to start a conference committee with mere minutes to go before a government shutdown. This is just the latest absurd and desperate attempt by Speaker Boehner to delay the inevitable–bringing a clean continuing resolution to the floor for Democrats and Republicans to vote on–and to continue pushing the country toward a completely unnecessary government shutdown. If Republicans were truly serious about avoiding a crisis they would pass the Senate’s short-term funding bill to remove the threat of a government shutdown immediately. We won’t negotiate while Republicans are threatening families and the economy with a crisis.

The Senate will be adjourned until 9:30am Tuesday.


President Obama, yesterday:

Full Transcript. Excerpts:

Of all the responsibilities the Constitution endows to Congress, two should be fairly simple: pass a budget, and pay America’s bills.

With regard to operations that will continue: If you’re on Social Security, you will keep receiving your checks. If you’re on Medicare, your doctor will still see you. Everyone’s mail will still be delivered. And government operations related to national security or public safety will go on. Our troops will continue to serve with skill, honor, and courage. Air traffic controllers, prison guards, those who are with border control — our Border Patrol will remain on their posts, but their paychecks will be delayed until the government reopens. NASA will shut down almost entirely, but Mission Control will remain open to support the astronauts serving on the Space Station.

What will happen:

More than 2 million civilian workers and 1.4 million active-duty military serve in all 50 states and all around the world. In the event of a government shutdown, hundreds of thousands of these dedicated public servants who stay on the job will do so without pay — and several hundred thousand more will be immediately and indefinitely furloughed without pay.

What, of course, will not be furloughed are the bills that they have to pay — their mortgages, their tuition payments, their car notes. These Americans are our neighbors. Their kids go to our schools. They worship where we do. They serve their country with pride. They are the customers of every business in this country. And they would be hurt greatly, and as a consequence, all of us will be hurt greatly, should Congress choose to shut the people’s government down.

The president is willing to negotiate but:

Keeping the people’s government open is not a concession to me. Keeping vital services running and hundreds of thousands of Americans on the job is not something you “give” to the other side. It’s our basic responsibility.

From ThinkProgress: Breakdown of economic costs of shutting down the government :

– A shutdown that lasted between three and four week could cost the economy about $55 billion, by the estimate of Moody’s Analytics economist Brian Kessler.
– Washington, DC, would lose $200 million a day on lost wages and lost spending by those who get furloughed. That estimate doesn’t include tourism, and the huge losses DC will feel from the museums and national mall being closed.
– The shutdown would “reduce federal spending” by about $8 billion, which could reduce GDP growth by .8 percent annualized, according to a report released Monday by Goldman Sachs.
– Moody’s Analytics’ Mark Zandi pegs the amount lost in economic growth in the fourth quarter at as much as 1.4 percent.
– One billion dollars a week from the pay of the roughly 800,000 federal employees will be lost from the U.S. economy.


*I suspect that the reporters and pundits who declared that Rep. Peter King (R-NY) and his band of “moderate Republicans” were working to stop the shutdown were part of a plan to throw sand in our eyes and make us forget that the Tea Party is the GOP. The Republicans took back the House of Representatives on the tea party wave in 2010 and those 80 some House members will always have a place at the table. To think otherwise is dangerous.

The Republican House of Representatives caused this shutdown.