As many of us are learning, during a government shutdown like the one we are currently experiencing, thousands of people will be forgoing paychecks. All of the workers being furloughed are considered “non-essential,” and will basically be on unpaid vacation until the shutdown ends. While I would argue that shutdowns seemingly unmask the fact that there are simply too many federal employees scattered around the country and that many of the jobs they fill should be turned over to private business… that’s not what this simple piece is about.
Did you know that during a government shutdown that is brought about by Congress, the members of Congress still get paid? Yes, you heard me right. The people who decided to shut down the government because they could not come to an agreement on funding, still get paid while thousands of others do not.
To make matters a little worse – since the Senate won’t agree to even meet with members of the House to discuss a compromise, it’s almost as if the members of Senate are literally getting paid to do nothing.
So, not only does Harry Reid (D-NV) shut down the government, closing federal parks and stopping after school programs. he also forces thousands of people who make a lot less than he does to stop getting their paychecks. And he and the other members of the Senate are sitting idly by, trying to wait out House Republicans, in hopes that the Republicans will cave and the Senate Democrats will get everything they want?
How is Harry Reid not the basis for a super-villain in a comic book somewhere? I know! How about some kind of spoof on the old Clint Eastwood movies, Dirty Harry? Harry Reid can play the title character, Dirty Harry, but in a great movie plot twist that everyone sees coming, he is actually the villain of the movie?
Several members of Congress at least seem to have a conscience, Representative Pete DeSantis (R-FL) has said, “I’ve asked the clerk to withhold any pay for me until we get this up and running. I just think that that’s fair for the folks involved who’ve been negatively affected by this.” Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) will also be working without pay. “I’m asking that they hold my check until this is resolved.” Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-GA) also announced today that he would not accept pay during the shutdown.
And there are others…
Honestly, maybe this isn’t the biggest deal in the news about the shutdown, but doesn’t it feel like part of the bigger problem with Washington, D.C.? There is a disconnect between the people in D.C. and those of us here at home who are supposedly being represented by these politicians. The problem isn’t necessarily what they believe or how they vote. The problem is the way they interact with each other in D.C.
The back scratching mentality of the Washington political elite is what is destroying our faith in government. We don’t feel like we can trust D.C. to obey us, because they only seem interested in themselves. Harry Reid and his cohorts are simply the perfect example of the disgusting self-servingness of the D.C. political class… and this shutdown is just more proof of that.
The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com