Rep. Johnson Votes to Keep Government Open, Prevent Devastating Shutdown
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Hank Johnson (GA-04) voted again to keep the federal government open and protect the American economy and families from a devastating shutdown. This legislation extends government funding through December 3rd, while also delivering billions in desperately needed disaster relief and helping resettle Afghan refugees fleeing persecution.
“Today, I proudly voted to keep the federal government open and protect Georgia families from a devastating government shutdown,” said Rep. Johnson. “Our nation is rebounding from the pandemic, and we cannot afford to cut families off from the essential government services we depend on every day. By keeping the government’s lights on, the Democratic Congress is ensuring that our nation stays on track to Build Back Better.”
This government funding bill, which now goes to the President to be signed into law, ensures the uninterrupted operations of government services for two more months – allowing Democrats and Republicans to continue to advance appropriations priorities through the regular order process for Fiscal Year 2022. It also delivers emergency funding for urgent priorities, including relief funding for communities devastated by this summer’s record-breaking natural disasters and funding to resettle Afghan refugees after the historic evacuation effort in August.
Importantly, this legislation prevents a destructive government shutdown, which would:
• Devastate workers: at the beginning of the Trump Shutdown in 2018-2019 – which was only a partial shutdown – 800,000 workers were either furloughed or denied pay while being required to report to work.
• Freeze key government services: including services that veterans and seniors rely on, as well as nutrition assistance for hungry families, government operations relating to national security, mortgage application approval, environmental and food inspections and other life-and-death services.
• Ravage the economy: according to the nonpartisan CBO, the Trump Shutdown slashed GDP by $11 billion – including $3 billion that will never be recovered.
Last week, House Democrats passed similar legislation to fund the government, which also included a suspension of the debt ceiling through December 2022. This action ensured that the federal government could continue to meet the financial obligations it has already made, including Social Security and Medicare benefits, services for veterans and paychecks for members of the military. However, on Monday, Senate Republicans put at risk the financial future of American families and the American economy by blocking this bill. A recent study by Moody’s showed that a debt default – which Republicans voted for – would cost the economy up to six million jobs and wipe out potentially $15 trillion in household wealth.
“It’s disgraceful that Republicans have chosen to play political games with the financial security of American families rather than work with us to strengthen the economy,” continued Rep. Johnson. “While Republicans are being reckless and indifferent to the middle class, Democrats are For The People – fighting for the health, financial security and well-being of American families.”