We talk of a ‘government shutdown when non-essential discretionary federal programs close.’ This usually occurs during moments when Congress fails to appropriate funds for various projects that are deemed important by the seat of the oval office. As a functioning government, fiscal procedures of the United States’ Congress appropriate funds by September 30 for the next fiscal year. In the absence or failure of such financial procurement, there is usually continuing funding resolutions that must be put in place as a recourse. But in cases where the US Congress can’t agree on a budget to finance a project, it might attract sanctions in the form of a shutdown to display the severity of the situation by any president of the United States. Such shutdowns will then serve as a signal to a complete breakdown in the budget process.
The current shutdown is dated as far as midnight of December 21, 2018, ending on January 12, 2019. The shutdown lasted for 22 days, making it the longest shutdown in the history of the United States with no end in sight. The implication of such ill – calculated political malignancy means more than 380,000 non-critical federal employees of nine agencies were temporarily without income and who knows what happens next? Shockingly, by the 15th of January 2019, Donald Trump invited 50,000 of the non-critical federal employees back to work without pay. While the continual effect of the shutdown is pushing many poor Americans to look for part-time jobs, as it stands the Banks in the United States don’t have the knowledge or resources to deal with the shutdown imposed. Amidst such mess, bills must still be paid. The more than 420,000 critical employees who have reported to work in the beginning of this year, have not seen the shadow of a pay stub. To remedy the condition of fainting hearts, the US Congress on January 11, decided to take drastic measures by passing a bill that encourages the reimbursement of the federal exempt employees for the loss of their wages once the shutdown ends. It is not surprising that the shutdown imposed by Donald Trump does not only attract sympathy from the American masses. People like the former US President George W. Bush has taken an unprecedented step. Not only did he speak out against Donald Trump’s government shutdown, but he also became a ‘delivery man’, delivering pizzas to federal workers who weren’t being paid but were still working in spite of the shutdown. Bush’s photo went viral on the social media as he made the generous delivery. As he called for an end to the shutdown, Donald Trump only reacted by offering a compromise. George W. Bush said, “It’s time for both the Democrat and Republican leaders to put their politics of interest aside, come together, and end the shutdown.” In a quote, Bush singled out members of the Secret Service, who still travel with him and watch over his home in Dallas, Texas and said, “Laura Bush and I are grateful to our Secret Service personnel and the thousands of Federal employees who are working hard for our country without a pay check.” “And we thank our fellow citizens who are supporting them.”
Revisiting June 16, 2015 at the touchline of the US Presidential running, the Big Chief of America Donald Trump officially announced his candidacy for presidency with the promise of building a giant wall at the US-Mexican border. Trump claimed it was the surest panacea to the rising socio-economic challenges faced by the citizens of the United States. Recapturing the words of Donald Trump: “I will build a great wall ― and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me ―and I’ll build them very inexpensively. I will build a great, great wall on our southern border, and I will make Mexico pay for that wall.” Contradictorily, the sentiment was echoed by one of Trump’s advisers on November 10, 2016, two days after Trump’s election in an interview granted by CNN. Where Rudy Giuliani stated, “President-elect Donald Trump doesn’t need the support of Congress to build the wall: he can simply accomplish it through executive order.” Contrary to Trump’s claim that the wall would be paid for by Mexico and a large portions of the wall had already been approved.
While the propaganda surrounding the construction of the border wall with Mexico keeps changing even after a lot of critical thinkers questioned the feasibility and the importance of such a wall at a time when most economies are migrating into the virtual space. And not excluding the fact that Mexico stands as the highest consumer of US commodities. With the fact that Mexico doesn’t pose any major security threat to the United States. If the construction of a wall makes sense to the republicans, the honest question to ask here is of why Trump has not been able to lure the Mexican government into covering the expenses of the wall as promised? Amidst the adverse consequences it has brought against thousands of federal workers who don’t have income because of the federal government shutdown. Has Trump the Big Chief of America lied to the American people?
Featured image | Donald Trump | Gage Skidmore | flickr
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Best of Africa.
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