What The Government Shutdown Conservative Media Are Cheering For Would Actually Do

Right-wing media are championing a government shutdown, ignoring that it would cause millions of Americans to lose access to food assistance, health care, and their paychecks while costing the government billions of dollars.

Federal Shutdown Looms As GOP Fights To Defund Planned Parenthood

Government To Shutdown If Congress Fails To Pass A Spending Bill By September 30. Congress has until September 30 to pass a spending bill and avoid a government shutdown. The government's funding has been hung up as Republicans battled to use the budget in order to defund Planned Parenthood, as The Wall Street Journal reports:

The Senate moved closer Thursday to passing a spending bill needed to avoid a government shutdown next week, but plans in the more volatile House remained up in the air.

Only days before the government's current funding expires on Sept. 30, the Senate blocked a bill that would have kept it open through Dec. 11 and rerouted $235 million away from Planned Parenthood.

After that measure was blocked, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) took steps to set up a procedural vote Monday evening on a bill to keep the government funded without the Planned Parenthood constraints--a measure expected to pass with bipartisan support.

Senate Republicans said they were confident both chambers would pass legislation preventing a government shutdown next Thursday. “People on both sides of the aisle want to move on and understand that the real negotiation that's going to occur will be after the short-term extension,” said Sen. Bob Corker (R., Tenn.).

Lawmakers need to pass a short-term spending bill because they haven't settled on funding levels for the fiscal year that begins Oct. 1. [The Wall Street Journal9/24/15]

Shutting Down The Government Would Have Serious Ramifications

USDA: Shutdown Would Suspend Or Delay Assistance For Millions Of Americans That Rely On Food Stamps. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) explained in a statement that shutting down the government would “suspend or delay food stamp payments to some of the 46 million Americans who receive the food aid,” as the Associated Press reported:

A government shutdown Oct. 1 could immediately suspend or delay food stamp payments to some of the 46 million Americans who receive the food aid.

The Agriculture Department said Tuesday that it will stop providing benefits at the beginning of October if Congress does not pass legislation to keep government agencies open.

“If Congress does not act to avert a lapse in appropriations, then USDA will not have the funding necessary for SNAP benefits in October and will be forced to stop providing benefits within the first several days of October,” said Catherine Cochran, a spokeswoman for USDA. “Once that occurs, families won't be able to use these benefits at grocery stores to buy the food their families need.” [Associated Press, 9/22/15]

Washington Post: “Patients With Critical Illnesses” Would Be Turned Away By NIH During A Government Shutdown. According to the director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and a top-ranking member of the House Budget Committee, should the government shutdown “patients with serious illnesses will be turned away and research will be disrupted.” As The Washington Post reported:

Patients with critical illnesses will be turned away and research will be disrupted if the government shuts down again on Oct. 1, the director of the National Institutes of Health and the top Democrat on the House Budget Committee warned Tuesday.

With just four legislative days remaining until the new fiscal year begins Oct. 1, Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) said that during the 16-day shutdown in 2013, new patients were not allowed in to the clinical facilities of the Bethesda medical campus.


During opening remarks, NIH Director Francis S. Collins lamented a slide in funding for NIH research and, in particular, the $1.55 billion lost when automatic budget cuts took effect via budget sequestration in 2013. As a result, Collins said, NIH was unable to fund 600 research grants.

“Who knows which of those grants would have been the next big breakthrough in diabetes or cancer or infectious disease?” Collins said.

Federal contingency plans based on the last shutdown show that 54 percent of 84,222 employees who work for the Department of Health and Human Services would be furloughed in the event of another shutdown. [The Washington Post9/22/15]

Washington Post: Government Shutdown “Costs More Than Keeping It Open -- More Than $2 Billion Last Time.” In a September 24 post, The Washington Post's Lisa Rein explained that shutting down the government costs more than keeping it open, costing the government “more than $2 billion” and “a total of 6.6 million days of lost work when employees were at home” last time Congress failed to pass a spending measure:

The last time this happened, for 16 days in October 2013, the White House put a price on it: 6.6 million days of lost work, $2 billion in back pay for 850,000 federal employees who did no work and 120,000 private-sector jobs gone.

The effects, according to an accounting by the Office of Management and Budget and later by the Government Accountability Office, also added up to less effective government services as federal agencies spent much of their time ramping up for a closure before it happened, then recovering afterward from delays to their operations.

Closing the government has macroeconomic effects on economic output, and forecasters had varying estimates two years ago on how significant that was. Much clearer, though, were the direct costs to taxpayers.

The budget office concluded that the furloughs of roughly 40 percent of the civilian workforce -- from the Defense Department to the Environmental Protection Agency -- hit $2 billion, or $2.5 billion if you add in benefits. [The Washington Post9/24/15]

CNN Money:  Over 800,000 Federal Employees Would Be Furloughed Without Pay. In a September 23 post for CNN Money Jeanne Sahadi wrote that a government shutdown “would inconvenience Americans across the country and bite many whose personal economy in one way or another is tied to the federal government.” Sahadi explained that a shutdown would affect, among others, federal employees, job and grant applicants, and small business owners and that more than 800,000 federal employees “could be told not to come to work ... and they will not be paid for that time unless Congress chooses to pay them retroactively when the government reopens”:

A shutdown is generally a waste of valuable time and resources. Even the threat of a shutdown is a waste because of all the advanced planning required.

Among other things, federal agencies have to decide: Which workers should be furloughed? Which programs and offices should close completely and which must continue because they protect life and property? How and when should necessary information be disseminated to workers and the public?


Federal employees: If the 2013 shutdown is any guide, more than 800,000 federal workers could be told not to come to work during a shutdown this year. And they will not be paid for that time unless Congress chooses to pay them retroactively when the government reopens, something that has happened in the past.

Those who are not furloughed will still be legally required to work, but they will not be paid until the shutdown is over.

In both cases, anyone who lives paycheck to paycheck will have a hard time making ends meet. [CNN Money, 9/23/15]

CNBC: Government Shutdown Would Throw “Federal Agencies Into Chaos, Costing Taxpayers Billions Of Dollars.” In a September 21 report for CNBC, John Schoen explained that a government shutdown would result in “chaos” for federal agencies while “costing taxpayers billions of dollars.” Pointing to the impact of previous shutdowns, Schoen explained that when Congress shutdown the government in 2013 “the creation of estimated 120,000 jobs new jobs” were sidetracked and that the impact was “felt by millions of businesses and individuals” across the country:

A possible U.S. government shutdown on Thursday, Oct. 1 has once again raised the prospect of throwing federal agencies into chaos, costing taxpayers billions of dollars in lost government productivity, along with a wide range of interruptions that will put a damper on billions more in business and personal financial transactions.


In January 2014, the Bureau of Economic Analysis estimated the direct impact of the last shutdown, in October 2013, lopped about three-tenths of a percent off real gross domestic product growth in the 2013 fourth quarter. That was in line with estimates from private economists, who figured the impact of the shutdown came to, at most, a few tenths of a percent of GDP.

The 16-day shutdown also sidetracked the creation of an estimated 120,000 new jobs, according to a report from the Council of Economic Advisers.


While the total impact on a $16 trillion economy may be relatively small, the chaos unleashed from a shutdown would once again be felt by millions of businesses and individuals, as mortgage applications are delayed, vacations to national parks interrupted and payments postponed to tens of thousands of small businesses that do business with the federal government. [CNBC, 9/21/15]

Conservative Media Urge Republicans To Shut Down The Government, Dismissing Consequences

Sean Hannity: Congressional Republicans Should “Go Fight For Something” And Shut Down The Government. On the September 23 edition of Premiere Radio Network's The Sean Hannity Show, host Sean Hannity urged Congressional Republicans to vote to defund Planned Parenthood, telling them to “let it shut down. Go on television and tell everybody the president and the Democrats shut down the government.” Hannity's comments were preceded by previous cheerleading for a shutdown, going as far as to tell Republicans to “Shut it down. who cares ... take a stand, be politically courageous.” [Premiere Radio Networks, The Sean Hannity Show9/23/158/4/158/3/15]

Fox's Charles Payne: “I'm Not Afraid Of A [Government] Shutdown.” In a September 27 tweet, FoxBusiness Network host Charles Payne wrote that he is “not afraid of a [government] shutdown” and that he thinks it is “time to stop hiding behind cowardly continuing resolutions” to fund the government: 

[Twitter.com, 9/27/15]

Breitbart News' Ben Shapiro: “Republicans Shouldn't Fear A Government Shutdown.” In a September 21 post, Breitbart News editor-at-large Ben Shapiro told Republican members of Congress not to “fear a government shutdown”:

Republican politicians have spent so long living in an environment controlled by the leftist media that they believe every narrative will be turned to their disadvantage. This is why Republican leadership buys into the idiotic notion that if Republicans fund the entire federal government except Planned Parenthood, and Obama then refuses to sign the budget, they will be blamed for the shutdown. That is not fully true. They will be blamed, but the blame will be split. The narrative in 2013 during the Obamacare shutdown quickly turned from Republican intransigence to President Obama's peevish attempts to shut down open air war memorials. Republicans looked bad in polls, but so did Democrats.


What, exactly, do Republicans fear?

The answer: they fear being held accountable by their own voters. They fear that if they set a precedent of willingness to shut down government, they will be expected to do so by their constituents to hold President Obama's feet to the fire. They're not scared of the media or Obama. They're scared that the failure theater, which requires the fuel of Republican constituent dollars and votes, might come to an end if voters expect them to do something. [Breitbart.com, 9/21/15]

Mark Steyn: When The Government Shuts Down, “88 Percent Of People Still Go To Work.” On The September 17 edition of Fox News' Your World with Neil Cavuto, guest Mark Steyn dismissed the impact of a government shutdown, claiming that “88 percent of people still go to work as usual.” [Fox News, Your World with Neil Cavuto9/17/15]

Erick Erickson Demands Republicans “Shut Down The Government” To Defund Planned Parenthood." Fox News contributor Erick Erickson has continuously demanded that Republicans defund Planned Parenthood -- even if it means shutting down the government to do so  -- going as far as to claim that the GOP “should be destroyed” if they “will not fight” to block the reproductive health care provider from receiving federal funding. In a series of blog posts for RedState.com, Erickson told the GOP to "[s]hut it down now." and “that if Republicans ”are not willing to defund Planned Parenthood, we should destroy them all, level their organizations to the ground, and spread salt on the remains":

What we are learning now is that Republican leaders have no inclination to fight this evil. They have for years been protected by a Washington pro-life establishment that has worked damn hard to keep Bart Stupak listed as a pro-life warrior as he sold out the cause on Obamacare. The pro-life establishment in Washington puts their Republican affiliation ahead of children who are being ripped apart.


If Republicans and the Washington Pro-Life movement, when confronted by the evil documented on unedited tape, are not willing to defund Planned Parenthood, we should destroy them all, level their organizations to the ground, and spread salt on the remains (metaphorically speaking, of course).

Republicans in Washington have spent more time avoiding their constituents over the August recess than they have fighting for anything in the past several years. Now here is a perfect opportunity to stand up for smaller government, fight evil, and put the left on defense.

Already there are voices on the right saying no, but then they always say no. Already there are voices on the right saying they can't, but then they always say they can't. Already there are voices on the right saying the President will veto it, but the President will always veto it.

And the babies continue to die -- ripped from their mothers wombs and their organs harvested.

If the Republicans will not fight this evil, they should be destroyed.

Every Republican Presidential candidates should be on record on whether they think the GOP should hold the line against funding Planned Parenthood no matter what.

If Republicans in Washington will not stop this and defund Planned Parenthood, Republican voters should take any and all action to destroy the party at the ballot box. If this party will not fight this evil, it will fight no evil and should itself die.

Metaphorically speaking, of course. [RedState.com, 7/29/15]

TownHall.com Columnist Calls For Republicans To Shut Down Government Over Planned Parenthood Funding. In a September 21 post, TownHall.com columnist Katie Kieffer said Republicans should “take [their] power back” by refusing to fund Planned Parenthood -- even if that means shutting down the government. Claiming that President Obama would ultimately be responsible if there were to be a shutdown, Kieffer wrote that “if we are unwilling to shut down the government in order to protect human life” the party would lose future elections:

Government shutdowns are not cancer and today I'll show why we must stop taking the bait. Indeed, I'll show why we will lose elections if we are unwilling to shut down the government in order to protect human life and reform immigration policy.


The President shuts the government down with his veto pen--not Congress. Technically, Congress could write and pass a budget bill that removes funding from Planned Parenthood and put it on Obama's desk. If he vetoes, then he is solely to blame for inconveniencing Americans with a shutdown in order to save an organization that profits from the sale of baby body parts.

Bash can bully us, but there is no use denying that Sen. Cruz (on defunding Planned Parenthood) and Donald Trump (on reforming immigration) have confirmed the words of Rush Limbaugh: We must “get over this fear [of being blamed for a shutdown]. You have to do what's right. There are legions of Americans willing to support you.”

We will take our power back by refusing to take their bait. Share this post with your fellow fishes so they don't bite on a worm that's hiding beneath a jagged hook. [TownHall.com, 9/21/15]