On October 1st, 2013 our government shutdown for a period of 15 days. The shutdown swept the headlines on every major news station, and instantly became the hottest topic in the country. Many government employees were furloughed from their jobs with some not being paid for their time off, while others did get paid to sit home and do nothing with taxpayer’s money. The cause of the government shutdown was the Republican Party’s relentless desire to not fund the Affordable Care Act, Obamacare, in the upcoming 2014 budget. Even though it has been deemed constitutional by the Supreme Court, the Republicans have been adamant to not have this type of healthcare in place for our nation. While the government was shutdown, the focus did shift from Obamacare to the debt ceiling, and whether or not it should be raised yet again. The current debt ceiling as of October 21st is upwards of 17 trillion dollars ("Debt Subject to Limit Graph"). This is a ridiculous number, which our government should be looking to reduce rather than raise to help us as a nation. Sadly, the government shutdown from a Republican stance did nothing as everything that the party wanted to achieve did not happen, and they eventually in the end conceded to the Democrats, letting them have their way to let the government reopen.
This is not the first time that our government has been shutdown, as recently as the Clinton administration our government was shutdown twice for periods of 6 days and 21 one days. Like in 2013, pressing issues regarding the nation at the time in 1995 and 1996 and the fact that the two parties were at such opposite ends of the spectrum on them led to the government being shutdown. The issues that led to the eventual shutdowns were Medicare, tax cuts, aid for the poor, and the budget deficit. Though the issues regarding the shutdowns were different, the effects ended up being very similar. The shutdown in the end cost the government money instead of saving them money like they wanted, and businesses suffered who did jobs with federal inspectors, and who dealt with national parks (Cass). Fortunately, in 2013 a bill was passed to open up some national parks if the states would pay the government money, states like Utah agreed to because of the high revenue national parks and tourism to these parks generates during the month of October (Berkes). One effect of the shutdowns during the Clinton administration was the Republicans were affected in the polls in the elections after the shutdown (Cass), although midterm elections are not for another year, the fact that the Republicans caused a shutdown could be costly for them.
The recent government shutdown has shown that Congress is entirely too partisan, and it is hurting our nation by not efficiently getting things done. Compromise is the biggest thing for an efficient government to have, and currently there is barely any when there is actually some. The problem in today’s politics is that the partisanship is getting out of control, the Democrats are becoming more liberal than before, and the Republicans are becoming more conservative than before. Not only is there extreme partisanship between the two major parties, but also within the Republican Party itself. The Tea Party is a faction of Republicans who believe in a grassroots movement to bring back the core values that our founding fathers built this country on. They are very conservative, and abide by the Constitution as it was meant to be determined, even in ambiguous writings where the wording can be interpreted differently in the 1700’s and now they think of the wording as the founding fathers would have (“About Us”). Their main motto/slogan is “We the People!” and they stick to it even using the Gadsen Flag as one of their symbols. The power struggle that the Tea Partiers and the traditional Republicans are experiencing right now is starting to destroy the party, and make a mockery of themselves. This does not fair well in the...
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