As we begin day nine of the Republican government shutdown, the effects are being seen across the country, hurting our economy and squeezing middle-class families and businesses. From yesterday’s New York Times:
“On the national seashores along North Carolina's Outer Banks islands, business owners compared the financial magnitude of closed beaches and waterways to that of a hurricane-forced evacuation. …Foreign visitors are few and far between at Rod's Steak House in Williams, Arizona, near the Grand Canyon, owner Larry Sanchez said. Business fell off about 25 percent by the end of the first week the park was closed, he said. At remote Grand Canyon National Park, where thousands of restaurant, hotel and other workers went without pay, a Phoenix food bank delivered about 600 boxes of food to workers. …In Alaska, Senator Lisa Murkowski said, hunters are barred from federal lands, placing their year's supply of game meat in jeopardy. ‘This is hunting season. This is when Alaskans are filling their freezers for winter,’ Murkowski, a Republican, said during a Senate committee hearing on Tuesday.”
“The effects are being felt across the country, but the Washington area, home to thousands of federal workers, not surprisingly has been hit hard. Moody's Investors Service said on Monday that it had a negative credit outlook for the Washington area because of the shutdown. Counties in Maryland could see income taxes hit, while sales taxes would dip in Virginia, Moody's said. Maureen O'Connor, public information officer for the Maryland labor department, said about 16,000 furloughed employees had sought unemployment benefits in the state as of Sunday night.”
It’s time for Republicans to end their shutdown. Speaker Boehner has the power to do so right away – we hope he makes the choice to do so.