House Republicans huddled late Monday and, according to a GOP aide, gave the speaker an ovation when he informed them that he was advising the House Administration Committee to begin preparing for a possible shutdown. That process includes alerting lawmakers and senior staff about which employees would not report to work if no agreement is reached.
An ovation? Really?
Here’s a little bit of a taste of what will come if the government is forced to shut down this month:
In 1995, for instance, it wasn’t just government workers who took big hits, but tens of thousands of businesses somehow reliant on the government whether they knew it or not. And there were millions of Americans and foreigners as well who depend on government services like the provision of passports and visas.
An important difference between now and then is that the economy was growing more strongly in terms of employment. If a shutdown happens now, it would be at a time when the economy is much less robust.
So the House GOP is applauding a development that will almost certainly send shock waves through the economy, hurting Americans who work for the government, work for employers connected in some way with the government, or just need basic health, public safety, veterans’ or passport services.
The GOP’s budget ploy is not about jobs. It’s about pushing a far-right, pro-corporate agenda whatever the cost to working people.