2013 Government Shutdown

In October of 2013, the Republicans and Democrats demonstrated how completely they have failed in their duties as legislators and leaders. Republican Congressmen and women, elected by their fellow citizens to serve our country in the House of Representatives, refused to pass a resolution to fund the United States government unless funding was removed for President Obama’s Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare. This protest was unprecedented in the history of our nation, and was blatantly unconstitutional, demonstrating the complete disdain House Republicans have for our Constitution and for the United States.

Obamacare is a piece of legislation that has problems, but it was passed by both houses of Congress and signed into law by the President, making it the law of the land. Obamacare was a product of our democratic system of governance, and we have an equally democratic process for repealing laws that are flawed or undesirable. The Constitution does not enable the House of Representatives to repeal a law of the land by defunding it, and the fact that House Republicans would even attempt this is shameful, borderline treasonous, and a clear demonstration that they are unfit to serve.

While the Republicans are primarily responsible for the shutdown, the Democrats are not blameless either. From the President on down, there has been a complete failure of leadership and unwillingness to compromise. The Republicans have been behaving reprehensibly, but they are doing so because these are the actions their constituents want from them. President Obama and the Congressional Democrats have made no effort to meet the public halfway, and reach out to Republican voters.

Because the Republicans, with help from the Democrats, chose to shut down the government, it shut down all the services the government provides, some of which are entirely necessary. Thanks to the government shutdown, veterans were locked out of memorials, and nobody was allowed to visit national parks. Thousands of government employees were suspended without pay, while others were forced to work without pay, and many essential services were compromised. This would be bad enough if this were a one-time occurrence, but this is a situation that will happen again and again until these parties are removed from power. It is time for Americans to rise up and demand an alternative to business as usual. Tell the Republicans and Democrats that we are not going to take it anymore, and that we’re tired of their squabbling and caving to special interests. Tell them we’ll be voting for someone else from now on.