Some Ind. Lawmakers Decline Pay During Shutdown
By Mike Perleberg
(Washington, D.C.) – The first federal government shutdown in 17 years enters a second day Wednesday.
U.S. House Republicans are attempting to force the Democrat-controlled Senate into a deal to stop or delay the Affordable Care Act, widely referred to as Obamacare.
The Senate wrapped up for the day Tuesday without a deal with the House on extending funding to get the government running again. That means there will be another day of no national parks, no national monuments, and no pay for thousands of government workers.
Republicans offered a measure to fund the District of Columbia’s government as well as the Department of Veterans Affairs, national parks, and museums. The proposal was defeated Tuesday night in what the Democrats called a piece meal attempt to fund a few government programs.
Congressman Luke Messer (R-IN 6) called the measure’s defeat a disappointment and called for President Barack Obama and Democrat leaders in the Senate to come negotiate.
“Democrats had yet another chance to fund critical parts of our government and chose not to. Now, veterans’ disability payments could be delayed, funding for the GI Bill and VA home loans are in limbo and our national parks and museums will remain closed,” Messer said.
Two Indiana lawmakers are refusing to take their paychecks during the government shutdown. Republican Senator Dan Coats was joined by Representatives Todd Young (R-IN 9), Larry Bucshon (R-IN 8), Marlin Stutzman (R-IN 3), and Jackie Walorski (R-IN 2) sent letters to the Chief Administrative Officer on Tuesday asking that their pay be withheld.
Messer, of Shelbyville, told reporters that asking his pay to be withheld is not necessary because the debt limit standoff should end by the time paychecks are issued at the end of October.
Democrat Senator Joe Donnelly said he will donate his salary during the shutdown to charity or the U.S. Treasury. Donnelly closed his six offices across the state, referring calls to his Washington office.