Now that the United States is about two weeks into having to endure the government shutdown, and still no end in sight, the American people are growing more angry by the day toward Congress not being able to figure how to end this. With the debt ceiling deadline looming in the distance in less than 36 hours now, everything is even more dire. Recent polls show that Americans are for getting rid of each and every single member of Congress.
Such signs of unpopularity do not come as a surprise to anyone who has been following the course of politics. The government’s shutdown put around 800,000 federal employees on furlough and left various programs for veterans, women and children almost penniless. All that Congress has done is upset the very people they are supposed to “serve”. Well if what they have done in public is not bad enough, here are more things Congress has managed to accomplish during the shutdown, and these are pretty sleazy even for politicians:
Grandstand at the World War II Memorial:
Most people have heard of this but the shutdown threatened to destroy the plans of a group of World War II veterans who had traveled to see the WW II memorial on the National Mall on Oct. 1. When they got to the barriers that showed the area was closed to the public, the veterans along with some members of Congress barged through and disobeyed the order. For the next two days, members of Congress gathered at the World War II memorial to participate in sleazy photo ops and the ensuing media circus. The politicians promised to battle for the elderly veterans and make sure they would be able to get to the memorial, even though Congress were the very ones why it was closed in the first place.
Put on Research Coats and Chastise Democrats for not Funding Cancer Research:
Some House Republicans went to the National Institutes of Health, where they decided to put on white lab coats and then they started pleading with Democrats to help stop the trouble the shutdown had done to facilities that aided children who had cancer.
Republicans wanted the Democrats to back a variety of smaller bills that would fund the government only on which programs that were considered most necessary at the time. Democrats declined, asserting that Republicans come with a fresh bill to supply the entire government, not just the parts that bothered the general public.
Not Giving up Their Paychecks:
Rep. Lee Terry (R-Neb.) owns a nice home and he stated in an interview this month that because of that, it would be part of why he would not give up his constitutionally protected $174,000 yearly salary during the shutdown. He stated that he had that nice house and a kid in college and he would not be giving away his paycheck when he still worked and earned it.
However over 100 other politicians, of both parties, decided to contribute their paychecks to charity during the shutdown, which has caused thousands of people all across the nation not to be able to make their house payment this month. Terry has since apologized for his comments since they caused such uproar, and he stated he would have his paycheck withheld as well.
Tell Federal Employees They Shouldn’t get Back Pay While They are Prohibited from Working:
Despite voting for a measure to compensate government workers for the time they spent not being able to work, some members of Congress said they did not believe that furloughed employees should get back pay while they were prohibited from working.
It was even suggested that they take out loans if they could not pay their mounting bills. That was according to Rep. Steve Pearce (R-N.M.) He quickly recanted and said it was spoken in error later.
Keep the Congressional Gym and Other Amenities Open as Essential Services:
Precarious government services have been reduced or stopped by the shutdown, but please do not worry about Congress getting their regular workouts at the congressional gym. House Speaker John Boehner’s (R-Ohio) has made sure to keep it open for all of them, both Republicans and Democrats. The gym has a swimming pool, numerous basketball courts, a sauna, a steam room and many flat screen TVs. The American taxpayers get to keep footing the bill for regular maintenance and of course keeping it shiny clean and fresh. There also is the electricity bill to worry about that keeps everything going.
America’s Representatives also still must have access to the Capitol subway system which takes them the small distance between the House and Senate buildings to the Capital itself. They could never be expected to walk. They might be too exhausted from their work-outs.
Complain that the gym does not have enough clean linens:
Rep. Bruce Braley (D-Iowa) showed he knew what real suffering and agony was when in a recent interview he explained that that very same gym should be closed. He stated he was disgusted by it because there were not even enough clean towels in it to go around.
He spoke of how hardly anyone is working in the gym and how there is not any towel service. He also explained how they had to do their own laundry. He is not the only one that has complained of such unsanitary conditions. Maybe the U.S tax dollars are not working right now.
Various other lawmakers also criticized how the gym is getting disgusting with only a skeleton crew on hand. It must be so hard for them to remember that they are the reason no one is working there, and it is heartbreaking to read they must do their own laundry. Now there is even more reason to hate Congress if anyone needed anything after reading some of these sleazy things congress has done during the government shutdown. One has to wonder what else they are up to. America probably does not want to know.
Written by: Kimberly Ruble