GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN! Translation…the shuttering of the federal government due to the inability of the congress to execute its’ sole responsibility as outlined in the United States Constitution; the appropriation of funds necessary to keep the government functioning on behalf of the people.
The United States government has shutdown. A failure of governance resulting from a historic level of incompetence on the part of our elected leaders.
Why did this happen? It happened due to the confluence of a series of false promises coupled with the self serving willingness on the part of elected officials to prioritize their prospects for re-election over the best interests of the American people.
The federal government is shuttered this morning because Donald Trump lied to American people in promising that the Mexican government would pay for a security wall along our southern border. A ridiculous promise that the president was now so desperate to fulfill, that he was demanding its funding be included in a any continuing resolution to fund the government. A demand coupled with yet another false assertion that Mexico would somehow reimburse us for the expenditure.
Hundreds of thousands of “non-essential federal workers will be furloughed this morning because the president, for no reason other than to keep a campaign promise made to his base, repealed Obama’s executive order known as DACA. An executive order which protected 800,000 people brought into this country illegally as children. An executive order supported by 87% of the American people and a large majority in congress.
Military personnel will not get their paychecks this morning because the president, having told a national audience that he would sign any bi-partisan immigration reform bill presented to him by congress, walked away from that promise and refused to support a bi-partisan compromise bill hand delivered to him by Democrat Senator Dick Durbin and Republican Senator Lindsey Graham.
The economy will take a hit to its GDP this morning because the president, frustrated over his inability to get congress to bend to his will, rejected the Durbin/Graham compromise in an expletive filled range in which he denigrated immigrants of color from Haiti and Africa as coming from “shithole” countries while expressing his preference for white immigrants from Norway.
The federal government is shuddered this morning because after choosing to appeal to his base over the best interests of the country as a whole, the president rejected a second compromise bill offered by Democrat Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.
The federal government is shuddered this morning because Republican leadership in the House and Senate refused to look to Democrats for bi-partisan support in crafting legislation that would sail through both chambers; choosing instead to appease their base and hold fast to proposals that had no chance of being voted into law.
The federal government is shuddered this morning. On whose shoulders will the American people lay the blame. The partisan finger pointing has already begun.
In 2013 the federal government was forced to shut down due to the inability of congress to agree on proper funding. In an interview with Fox News, then citizen Donald Trump was asked who he believed would ultimately shoulder the blame. Trump was clear that in his view the blame “always starts at the top.” That it was up to the president to lead…get the people in the room and negotiate a deal. Trump said: “20 years from now 100 years from now they won’t be talking about the members of congress who failed to get a deal to avoid a shutdown, they will be talking about the president.”
Trump was right. This failure to govern lies squarely on his shoulders. The consequence of a level of incompetence and ineptitude never before seen in the annals of American history. For never in the history of our Republic has a party which controls both chambers of congress and the Oval office failed to keep the government running.
How fitting that this government shutdown should come on the one year anniversary of the inauguration of the most incompetent president to ever to hold the highest office in the land.