Thursday, December 18, 2014

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The Call Blog: Government Shutdown Begins As Congress Fails To Reach Budget Deal

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We had every line ringing last night heading into the government shutdown and it was no different tonight on day one of the stalemate. I'm not sure if Washington lawmakers are representing their constituents' interests anymore or just representing their own because this stalemate doesn't help anybody in the end. When did compromise become such a dirty word?

For the first time in 17 years, the federal government is partially shut down. After failing to reach a budget deal before the midnight deadline, about 800,000 federal employees were told their services were no longer needed. Parks, historic sites, and museums around the country closed today as Democrats and Republicans hit a stalemate over a spending plan that includes President Obama's health care act.

Despite the bickering over health care, parts of the Affordable Care Act debuted today. In New York State, the health insurance exchange website slowed after receiving two million hits in the first two hours of operation. Thousands of New Yorkers are among those federal employees who aren't getting paid. Is this shutdown worth it?

Were you surprised when the midnight deadline passed with no budget deal in Washington? Is the federal government shutdown affecting you directly? Who is responsible for this stalemate? What is your level of respect for Washington lawmakers right now?

Send your thoughts using the link above.

This is a kind of loaded question, the way it is phrased -- "Is this shutdown worth it?" I suppose that giving into blackmail from a minority of a minority, who have planned from the moment that most of them took office in 2010 to sabotage the Affordable Care Act, would be worth it?

Upper West Side

It is not directly having a financial impact on me, but I am very upset about what is going on in congress. It seems as though this radical group is forcing itself upon us, and that we no longer have a reasonable government.


The whole things is ridiculous.

It is only happening because the extreme right wing will do anything they can to make Obama look bad.

If a Republican were in office and had passed the very same Affordable Care Act, they would be very supportive of it. I just hope they come to their senses soon and realize that Obama care is here to stay.

Jackson Heights

Ridiculous -
Out of business or fired
If I can choose


I am not surprised at all. The representatives were sent to do a job and failed... No excuses. They cared more about allowing illegal immigrants into the country than the rights of U.S. Citizens. Well it does not take a wizard to figure out who will not be supporting the reps come election time. They make me vomit.

Park Hill

With 800,000 government workers idled and with no ill effects on the nation, the conclusion is they are not needed. Let then go permanently.

Port Richmond

I have lost all respect for these politicians for years now. Whatever side they are
on. To me it makes no difference. The party they belong to are just in name only.

Whatever they do is never for us American citizens even though we pay their high
priced salaries to them for what I consider a part time job. It just goes on and on.

It also takes to long to come to a decision about anything.

Morris Park

This "shut down" was caused by both democratic and republican members of congress. I have no respect for any politicians and believe we need term limits to reign them in. I wish we could vote them out but as we know very few Americans vote in the first place.

I was the ninth person to vote in my district (25th District). Voted for Letitia James. Am keeping my fingers crossed.

Midtown East

Now that our illustrious Congress, with its cast of do nothing morons,idiots,procrastinators and windbags has shut down the government,they,along with President Obama and Vice President Biden should not receive one dime of their salaries until this crisis is resolved,and the government is up and running again. Thanks to these overpaid,underworked buffoons,thousands upon thousands of people are going to suffer severe economic hardship-they all have to pay their bills,but because they will not get their paychecks,that will certainly not happen. This shutdown is totally uncalled for and proves once again that Congress and the President cannot agree on anything at all.This country has the saddest excuse for a government ,which is making our forefathers turn over in their graves more than once.We better start praying for divine providence to intervene,because it looks like we are in for a protracted shutdown because of ignorance,a lack of common sense,and no real concern for the American people.

Fresh Meadows

Shame on the Republicans for acting like little kids in this shut down. Do they not know how much pain it's causing families. But bigger shame on the voters who elect and re-elect these fools. We are the laughing stock around the world

Washington Heights

The latest chapter of the Republican Party's extremist policies to overturn a federal law of its own making -- the Affordable Care Act, brings us back to those warm & fuzzy New Gingrich days with his "Contract with America," which also led to a governrment shutdown under Pres. Bill Clinton. But it ended up costing the GOP the House in the next election. Hey, Tea-Party, buh-bye. You just orchestrated your own demise.

Upper West Side

The government shutdown means to me that the will and needs of the people have taken a backseat to closed minded,self righteous do nothings and dare I even say a racially motivated defiance against the president. When I see friends and family furlowed and rich do nothings getting checks I'm ashamed and disgusted. We need to demand their jobs and send them packing in congress.


Shame on the Republicans. They have done everything imaginable to hinder the Presidents agenda. Let's not forget that the President averted a financial collapse when he took office. He ended a war. The new health care plan will benefit millions of. Americans. Its about time the wealthy anted up. Enough is enough.


I am affected because i was injured on the job and now my paper work can not be processed, tests can not be approved.

Howard beach

I feel the congress paycheck should be part of the shutdown. They would not be so eager to shut down the government if it effected their livelihood.


I blame the republicans for this "mess". When they had a chance to negotiate, It was Speaker Boehner that walked away from the negotiating table, and "refused to talk to Pres.Obama".

This is no longer about the ACA, it appears to be a personal war these Republicans have waged, and it is geared toward Pres.Obama. They have lied to the public and they have left their constituents in the dust with absolutely No Regard for what they want. This is not Politics, this is lunacy.

Upper West Side

Since the Congress created the government shutdown, they should be the first people furloughed for the duration.

Also, none of our public institutions, social programs or military need be shutdown or furloughed. The money can come from abstaining from giving billions of our money to foreign aid for the duration of this crisis and giving that money to fund all of our people here in the United States.


Change and compromise won't come to Washington D.C. and Congress until voters get a backbone and vote out all those old Republicans like McCain, Boehner and Mitch McConnell. They're letting the ignorance of the tea party candidates dictate to them because they want to remain in office.

Sayville, New York

The politicians - members of Congress - the House and the Senate should NOT be paid during this shutdown - why should they? We, the people, are suffering - I, for one, am a contractor for a government agency - the EPA, and was already "locked out" of work due to some Workers Comp issue at the agency that hired me, which is funded by the federal government. I lost 1 1/2 weeks of pay, and had to use up all of my accrued leave in order to get pay for the remainder of the 3 week lock out. My contract with the EPA was renewed; however, my hours and pay were both cut by 20% commencing Oct. 1st. Now the government is shut down due to the stupidity, blindness, greediness and corruptness of politicians, who are receiving pay? They should be held responsible for their actions. They are not above the law, so to speak. I am now without pay, unable to procure gainful employment, and even if I do receive unemployment benefits, the amount will be paltry, due to my low salary that I am receiving as a contractor.

Shame on all the politicians, both Democrats and Republicans. And most Americans do not want Obamacare, and no one really knows the full story behind it - it's so obtuse, complex - no one has really been able to comprehend it, but we're all told it looks great on paper. Hey, so did Communism, as per Karl Marx.

For shame on all members of Congress. You should be deprived of your pay, just as we , the people, are. You are supposed to be working for us, not against us.


It's the Republican and Tea Party more to blame for this shutdown. The Affordable Care Act is the biggest sticking point here and they have been trying to repeal it since the get-go. Now they are resorting to any means necessary to dismantle it since SCOTUS ruled it was constitutional.


This is a broad political game of chicken, of which I would blame both Democrats and Republicans. If we continue crawling in this direction, we will soon be in lock step with most third world nations. America was not built with one political party, or another, it was built on the backs of people, and no one party should monopolize the health of the nation, simply because we cannot agree on who or what is America's greatest asset.


Let"s call a spade a spade. The real reason we have this government shutdown is that the Tea Party faction of congress hate President Obama
and will do anything to block him. They cannot bear the idea of a black man being in the white house.


Take the billions given to foreign aid to fund our government and you won't need a shutdown.


As a Governmemt employee I am directly affected by the furlough I have had friends and family call me non stop wondering what we are going to do? Many of us are apart of the working poor especially in NYC. This is such a disgrace that the people who have the nerve to tell me to come to work and not get paid are still cutting themselves a check. It's not myself or anyone that I know makes crazy amounts of money 23-38,000 a year is not a lot way less than your average congressman; all because they are trying to hinder My President from doing something that would benefit everyone in this nation and only further make our nations legacy shine even brighter. These people disgust me, why shouldn't Americans have the same options as Canadians or those from the United Kingdom? When they are ill to go see a doctor and not have to choose if they are going to see that doctor or eat that day? I am going to continue to go to work and wear my uniform with pride because I stand fast with my President and what he is trying to accomplish and for all those that believe the republicans are doing the right thing by trying to hinder our President goals I say shame on you. May you soon be at the mercy of those that obviously don't care about you either. Unless you are funding those in Washington you don't matter.


The Democrats don't want the government shutdown because most people will not miss it. Obamacare is a job killing disaster that must be averted!

Midtown Manhattan

If Obama care is such a good idea why is Obama and the Democrats exempting themselves from participating in it?


John, What Does ObamaCare Have To Do With Passing The Budget That Is Supposed To Be For The Country? The Health Plan Passed Already? Let It Go!!!! The Republicans Are Trying To Make People Believe That They (Republicans) Have The Peoples Interest At Heart. They Are Only Concerned About Loosing Profits. And That's The Power (Profits) That They Are Only Concerned About.

Reverend Islaam

Congress can get away with this shut down because most American's don't vote. Voting is our only tool to hold elected officials accountable.

All politics is local. If you didn't take five minutes to vote in today's run off, maybe you shouldn't complain.

Prospect Heights

The federal government should be ashamed of themselves for this shut down. Republicans and democrats are at fault for letting this happen. How are employees supposed to survive and support their families and meet expenses? If I don't go to work I don't get paid so why should these selfish inconsiderate people be rewarded for this shut down instead they should be penalized. How is this suppose to make an already struggling economy better? I say fire them all start fresh. You don't want obamacare come up with a real solution if not shut your mouth


What Congress is doing is criminal. I blame our entire government, which has been bought and sold by lobbyists and special interests. nothing will change unless and until their dirty money is taken out of the game. Members of Congress are only interested in keeping their jobs and their perks. Why don't they have to abide by the Affordable care act? They voted for it.

They have no clue what's going on in the real world, they think $40,000 a year with 3 kids is middle class!


The people who blame the government shutdown on the Democrats and say it's their fault for not trying to compromise with Republicans on Obamacare are forgetting one crucial fact: Obamacare IS a compromise!

The Affordable Care Act is pretty much the same health plan that Bob Dole promoted in 1996, and that Mitt Romney endorsed when he was Governor of Massachusetts. Just because the Republicans in Congress have become more extremist does not mean the rest of us have to be dragged over to their world where people go bankrupt and die for lack of decent health insurance. They can have their sick society all they want, but leave us out of it.

Lower East Side

Shame on the law makers in Washington who don't want the American people to have adequate health coverage. We, the tax payers, pay for the politicians' health care and other benefits yet they don't want us to have health insurance.

Cambria Heights



This is why we need civics classes in school.


Sorry but I think this Obamacare will be one big mess. Not gonna work

Bay Ridge

The government shutdown doesn't surprise me; This is what we get when we have divided government. Further, there should be a constitutional amendment requiring all Members of Congress and the President to get furloughed if they can't enact an on-time budget.


Republicans are going to get killed come Election DAY


Growing up in Italy. ..I know what social medical can do. until u are not very sick is good but after something bad happened to my father we still went private to a doc, and pay a lot for a private visit if not the waiting list was for more than one year. Didn't have that time! So we still paid privately.

I will get to the point... I am not a government worker, but I am very disturb on how American People in the Senate would not come together vote on this certain topic of "Healthcare" to help certain individuals to get the medical insurance needed. At this point, I do not have Health insurance, "NOW WHAT!" The point is: THE HOUSE SENATE SHOULD NOT BE PAID, TAKE AWAY THEIR PAYCHECK FOR AT LEAST 6 MONTHS !!! They (senate) would not "QUACK SO MUCH!!!" They would become one of "US" NO MONEY!!!!" In my opinion, "WE NEED NEW EYES ANYWAY!"

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