Opinion: Shutdown is due to GOP unwillingness to compromise

Opinion: Shutdown is due to GOP unwillingness to compromise

Cory Spiers

We are a week into the first federal government shutdown in 17 years – the point in time when many analysts say the true effects of this action will be felt.

Many are certainly feeling the effects of the shutdown, but in order to truly grasp what is happening, we must look no further than our own state.

Six thousand state workers receive government funds, according to the News & Observer.

The state Department of Health and Human Services has furloughed 337 workers.

Approximately half of the 14,500 civilian employees at Fort Bragg have been furloughed, along with 2,000 jobs at the Environmental Protection Agency in the state. If the shutdown continues, those who rely on food assistance likely will not receive it, according to WRAL.

These facts give some idea of how this affects us, but the important question is why this is occurring.
The reason is the Republican Party. They have been pushing to close down the government to stop the Affordable Care Act from going forward and look to eliminate it altogether.

Since the shutdown, both parties have blamed the other for unwillingness to compromise.

House Republicans are pushing for a continuing resolution that would defund ACA.

Democrats have rejected this, insisting upon a “clean” continuing resolution that will fund the government without affecting the ACA.

The Democratic proposal is a fine compromise.

They propose, and the Senate has passed, a $986 billion continuing resolution, an amount that is only about $20 billion higher than Paul Ryan’s budget and much less than any previous Democratic proposals.

The Democrats are not going to defund the ACA. The measure never had any success of going through the Senate, and would certainly have been vetoed had it been able to get through.

“We have to get something out of this,” Rep. Marlin Stutzman (R-Ind.) told the Washington Examiner. “And I don’t even know what that is.”

That is a good  illustration of the Republican position.

When you strip away the rhetoric, all we have is a group of confused people whining because they can’t have their way all the time.

As bad as the government shutdown has been for so many, it is miniscule compared to what could happen if we go past the debt ceiling and effectively default on our financial obligations.

Let us hope we can get the government open again soon and that they will stand strong against the Republican intransigence that plays such a major role in the political dysfunction that we are witnessing.

Opinion: KEVIN GRIFFIN, Opinion writer