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Letter: McConnell must also own America’s lengthy shutdown

The Trump shutdown is now the McConnell shutdown. In December the Senate unanimously passed a Continuing Resolution, funding the government. After criticism from Ann Coulter and Rush Limbaugh, Donald Trump threatened to veto the bill. Now, 800,000 federal employees are furloughed and their families have no paycheck. Thousands of other federal employees are working without pay.

A previous letter writer opined, “No one is asking a single federal employee to lay down his or her life. You simply have to forgo being paid for a few days or weeks.” This is false, on many levels.

FBI, DEA, ATF agents and TSA screeners are continuing to risk their lives without receiving a paycheck. Due to involuntarily forgoing pay, employees are suffering damage to their credit ratings which will last well after the shutdown ends.

Nancy Pelosi has gotten bills passed with bipartisan support in the House of Representatives that would fund the government and put all the federal employees back to work, and receiving pay checks.

Mitch McConnell has refused to let the Senate consider and vote on those bills. This one man is now responsible for not letting a co-equal branch of government send a message that no occupant of the Oval Office may act with unfettered power.

Our fellow Americans should not be held hostage to funding a wall, which is of dubious value in protecting the United States from illegal drugs, gangs and terrorists from Central America.

We have more to fear from illegal drugs, which come through checkpoints at the border with Mexico, those which are manufactured in China and are delivered to U.S. airports, and our home-grown gangs and terrorists.

Larry Finkelstein

East Amherst

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