How would a government shutdown work?

by Bruce Webb

Because I don’t get it. The U.S. government operates on a Fiscal Year basis meaning that next year starts on Sept 30th. Which means, far as I know that government operations, including implementation of HCR, are funded right through the next Sept 30th (because I don’t think there are important Appropriations bills hanging, nor would R’s have control prior). And while I don’t see any Constitutional bar to a new Republican majority passing legislation to actively stop some government spending simple inaction wouldn’t seem to have any effect. And there would not seem to be enough of a political opening to push anything through in light of the ability of a Democratic Senate filibuster (not that I think the Dems will lose the Senate) or a Presidential veto to block action. Are Republicans, in light of what will be at best a narrow majority REALLY willing to institutionalize their image of the Party of No by simply refusing to pass ANY budget and appropriations bills next year? Do they really plan to go to the American people and explain their plan to close all National Parks right in time for next Labor Day? Oh and by the way there will be no one to process your Social Security check come fall?

From Republican rhetoric you would think they have the option to change the name plates on the Office of the Speaker one day and then turn out the lights of DC the next. But from where I sit and from what I know it just doesn’t work that way. Are these guys just blowing smoke? Or just inhaling deeply on some really great ganja? As I said I don’t get this at all. The politics maybe, the mechanics though? Not seeing it.

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