As the stare down over the government shutdown ends its eighth night in Washington, lawmakers are readying for another fight.
The federal government shutdown is now affecting Minnesota jobs. The state will lay off 105 health department workers immediately, and thousands of other federal workers in the state will face the same fate. And Congress appears to be standing still. According to Congressman Erik Paulsen’s office, he skipped out on his own event Monday to head back to Washington to work on ending the shutdown. Some disappointed constituents, like Michael Waring of Edina, said they wanted to talk with him about ending the shutdown – even if it means joining with Democrats to do it.
Last time the government shut down in 1995-96, Republicans were blamed and paid a heavy price. They lost seats in both the House and Senate, and Presidential candidate Bob Dole went down in defeat to President Clinton.
Mary wrote to us this week out of frustration. In fact, many of you were quite angry in your Good Question submissions about the government shutdown. On Tuesday, we answered the GQ about Congressional members’ salaries. I thought we’d use this space to answer Mary’s question: Is there a recall option for Congress?
Hundreds of thousands of federal workers won’t be getting paid for the foreseeable future. That had many of you emailing, wanting to know: Do members of Congress get paid during a government shutdown?
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Minnesota’s third district congressman Erik Paulsen talked about the government shutdown with John Hines on Tuesday morning.
Thousands of federal workers in Minnesota could be furloughed Tuesday. That will happen if Congress can’t reach an agreement to fund the federal government by midnight Monday.
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This week, normally accessible members of Congress and their staff have not returned phone calls. Lawmakers usually ready to offer up opinions have hidden behind statements suggesting which way they are leaning but also offering up expressions of understanding for the opposing side.
CBS News Military analyst Ret. Colonel Jeff McCausland joined Dave Lee on Thursday morning to discuss the latest developments in the US-Syria conflict.
Minnesota’s congressional delegation appears deeply divided by pressure to take military action against Syria. Republican Rep. Erik Paulsen calls the President’s request “too broad, too open-ended, too risky” — so does Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar.
One family in Minnesota is watching the crisis in Syria unfold for very personal reasons. George Bittar lives in Rosemount and spends most of his time lately glued to Skype, making sure his wife Sally, who’s in Syria, is OK. “It’s been very stressful,” George said. “She’s there and I’m here and we just, sometimes, we can’t sleep. And it’s just so hard for both of us.”
There appears to be little disagreement about the evidence of Syria’s use of chemical weapons, but amongst Minnesota’s Congressional delegation – there are major differences over what to do about it. At the Minnesota State Fair, members of Congress were giving all sorts of advice. Democrat Keith Ellison says he supports a limited, tactical military response to chemical warfare.
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