Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Government shutdowns are expensive

Senator Burr doesn't know that government shutdowns always cost the government money:
“We always have enough money to pay our debt service,” said Mr. Burr, who pointed to a stream of tax revenue flowing into the Treasury as he shrugged off fears of a cascading financial crisis. “You’ve had the federal government out of work for close to two weeks; that’s about $24 billion a month. Every month, you have enough saved in salaries alone that you’re covering three-fifths, four-fifths of the total debt service, about $35 billion a month. That’s manageable for some time.”
He also doesn't seem to know that federal workers will probably get backpay. The House has already unanimously passed a bill guaranteeing backpay for furloughed federal workers. Although the Senate has not passed it yet, I think it probably will. While I support giving them backpay, that means that every day that John Boehner refuses to allow the House to vote on a clear CR means another day that our tax dollars will ultimately pay 800,000 for not working. This whole fake crisis is bleeding money at a crazy rate.

So not only are some Republicans fooling themselves about what hitting the debt ceiling would mean, they are deluding themselves into thinking that this shutdown stunt somehow saves the government money. It doesn't. If they really gave a shit about the deficit they wouldn't do stupid stuff like this.