Government shutdowns are terrible for the economy
As 2018 begun, the United States government narrowly escaped a second government shutdown on Feb. 9th. Not two months have gone by this year, and the US government has nearly shut down twice over a budget resolution that was meant to be completed in June of last year.
President Donald Trump, among with multiple Republican congressmen, have endorsed the idea of a shutdown as a way to punish the Democrats in Congress who oppose them, constantly referring to the possibility of “a good shutdown to clean up [the Democrats’] mess.” Although this may be considered to be an unsurprising act in the realm of modern American politics, the members of the Republican party fail to realize what they are doing to their government’s economy, as well as how those who work for the federal government feel about going without pay for the sake of Congress.
President Trump has been advocating the idea for a “good” shutdown since December. During the shutdown in late January, his son and confidant Eric Trump claimed that the shutdown was “good for us,” after his father was criticized for applauding the fact that the government was shutting down. After the government reopened and Senator Chuck Schumer (D) was the last to sign the continuing resolution into February, an abundance of both Republican congressmen and members of the Trump administration commented that the shutdown had done something along the lines of “teaching the Democrats a lesson.”
The day before the resolution’s expiration on February 9th, President Trump made comments that seemed like a shutdown was the best option possible, announcing that “he’d love to see a shutdown tomorrow.”
In addition, Senator Rand Paul (R) willingly became the sole supporter of the shutdown hours before the agreement was reached. Support for a shutdown seemed to emanate from the conservatives’ camp as they refused to hear the Democrats’ negotiations.
The issue with supporting shutdowns lies in economic spending. The 2013 government shutdown cost the country 24 billion dollars in losses. Experts from Forbes and Business insider projected a government shutdown in February to negatively impact the GDP. Shortly after President Trump signed off on the continuing resolution, Senator Paul tweeted that Republicans must “stand for less spending.”
While the United States wasted roughly a billion dollars by shutting down the government in January, members of the Republican party rejoiced over the event. The highest priority of the conservatives is to tax less, and therefore reduce government spending. Shutting down the government does nothing but the opposite of that.
While Trump continues to praise the concept of a shutdown to set the Democrats straight, he damages his countries GDP by having no issue with flushing billions of dollars worth of government funding go down the drain. If anything is to be said, it is that the Trump administration is willing to damage the economy that they promised they would nurture.
The other important thing to consider is the 900,000 people who were not permitted to work during January’s shutdown. Dr. Adele Turzillo, a supervisor who has worked in the Department of Agriculture for 13 years, explained that not only are many government workers economically affected by the January shutdown, but also that one of her National Program Leaders had to cancel a panel at the last minute, a project that he had been working on since October. The flow of the government is derailed in far greater ways than one might think. It also must be mentioned that, despite the desire of President Trump and the congressional Republicans to boost the economy to return jobs to the United States, they are willing to cut the pay of nearly a million Americans as leverage over the Democrats. As Dr. Turzillo asserted “government workers are being used as pawns in the Republican’s game. And that’s not right.”