Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the youngest woman ever elected to Congress, has said that she believes members of Congress should be furloughed during a government shutdown. As Buzzfeed News reports, when a federal worker is furloughed, it means that he or she has to go to work without receiving pay. As Ocasio-Cortez, notes this rule does not apply to congresspeople. Based on statistics provided by Democrats in the Senate, 380,000 workers will be furloughed during the current partial government shutdown.
“Next time we have a gov shutdown, Congressional salaries should be furloughed as well,” Occasio-Cortez wrote on Twitter. “It’s completely unacceptable that members of Congress can force a government shutdown on partisan lines & then have Congressional salaries exempt from that decision. Have some integrity. “
The current partial government shutdown has been caused by an impasse over the construction of a wall along the border between the United States and Mexico. This was one of President Donald Trump’s key campaign promises and at several rallies, he claimed that Mexico would foot the bill for its construction. But it looks like he’s determined to have the American taxpayer pay for it instead. Trump recently refused to sign a spending bill that did not include the $5.7 billion needed to build the wall, The Balance reports. Despite the fact that a new spending bill was passed in the House of Representatives, the Senate was not able to pass the new bill ahead of the shutdown deadline.
“It is a shame that this president, who is plunging the nation into chaos, is throwing another temper tantrum and going to hurt lots of innocent people,” said Chuck Schumer of New York, the Democratic leader in the Senate, as reported by The New York Times. “The Trump temper tantrum may produce a government shutdown; it will not get him his wall.”
The current shutdown affects nine government department departments including Homeland Security, Justice, Agriculture, Treasury, Interior, Transportation, Commerce, Environmental Protection Agency, and Housing and Urban Development.
As the Inquisitr previously reported, President Trump has said that the current shutdown will “hopefully” not last “long.”
“Call it a Democrat shutdown, call it whatever you want,” Trump said in an interview after both the Senate failed to pass the spending bill. “Let’s work together, let’s be bipartisan and let’s get it done. The shutdown hopefully will not last long.”
Those words probably won’t offer any comfort to the hundreds of thousands of workers whose salaries have been furloughed just days before Christmas.