Former state representative calls short term government shutdown solutions ‘stressful’
BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) - The House has passed new speaker Mike Johnson’s continuing resolution, potentially averting a government shutdown until early next year if passed by the Senate.
While not as close to the wire as September’s plan, which Senate voted to pass just three hours before a shutdown would take place, the threat left many on edge.
Patti Minter, a Western Kentucky University history professor and former Kentucky state representative, said these threats of a government shutdown come from a lack of partisan compromise.
“This is one of many threatened shutdowns that have happened just in the year 2023. So, it’s incumbent on the people who represent us to work together and recognize that they do have a job to do, that they’re constitutionally obligated to do, and to get it done for a lot of different reasons,” Minter said. “This is not some theoretical debate, a government shutdown hurts the United States economy, and it hurts the American people in a lot of different ways.”
Johnson’s plan would extend four spending bills until Jan. 19 for programs for veterans, transportation, housing, agriculture and energy, with eight other spending bills for national defense that would extend to Feb. 2.
Minter said these short-term solutions aren’t fair to the public.
“If you work in air traffic control, if you work in a national park, or you work in a federal installation where you would either be faced with shutting down or you’d have a lot of people who had to work as essential workers without pay. How do you plan for that?” Minter said.
Minter adds that even those that don’t work on a federal level could feel the negative economic impact of a shutdown.
“Anytime you shut something down, if you shut down tourist attractions, it has a ripple effect in our economy,” Minter said. “You’re talking about restaurants, hotels, even people who work at convenience stores, you’re not getting as much business.”
For those who are concerned about a possible future shut down, Minter encourages using your voice.
“Everybody is represented by a member of the U.S. Congress, and it would be a great time, if you’ve not done it already to call your congressman’s office,” Minter said. “Call, send emails to everybody in the delegation if you’d like, because your voices need to be heard. It’s their job to listen to their constituents.”
White House officials have confirmed that President Joe Biden will sign the resolution if it’s approved by the Senate.
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