Tuesday, October 1, 2013 WEBSITE | FORWARD TO A FRIEND | SHARE ON:
 
**UPDATE: GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN**
 

Dear Neighbor,

Last night Congress failed to reach a compromise to keep our government running. Starting today, thousands of federal employees in El Paso and across the country will face furloughs and have to go without pay because Congress failed to do its most basic function - to fund the government.

Over the last several days, the House and the Senate have been unable to pass a Continuing Resolution (CR) that funds our government past October 1, 2013. House leadership remains intent on passing a budget that is contingent on defunding and delaying the Affordable Care Act (ACA) - legislation that was signed into law three years ago, upheld by the Supreme Court, and set to go into effect today.

I do not support adding unrelated items to the CR, such as the ACA or any other law. If Congress wants to make changes to a law, we should do so through the regular legislative process, not by holding the country hostage with the threat of not meeting Congress’ most basic responsibility to fund the government.

Many of you have called or written to me out of concern for our military service members and their families, as well as the people who care for them, worried about how they will be affected by the shutdown. Until we pass legislation to fund our government, I will join the men and women in our district who will be affected by the shutdown and I will not take a paycheck.

 I stand ready, with an open door and an open mind, to work with my colleagues to achieve a compromise and bring an end to this shutdown.  In the past several days, I have met with members of both parties to discuss possible solutions to our budget impasse. Rather than give in to the partisanship that plagues Congress, I am hopeful that these meetings will bring about a compromise that will bring relief to thousands of federal employees in our district and to the hundreds of thousands of us who depend on the services they perform.

I will continue to use my Facebook page to keep you updated on any developments. If you have questions about the government shutdown, please contact my office at (915) 541-1400.

Sincerely,

(signed)

Beto O'Rourke
Member of Congress

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What you need to know about the government shutdown

Here is some information about the services that will continue and those that will be affected during the shutdown.

  • Social Security, Medicare, and unemployment insurance benefits will not be interrupted.
  • All federal employees deemed “necessary to protect life or property” will not face furloughs. This includes law enforcement, the military, air traffic controllers, and Customs and Border Patrol officers and agents.
  • National parks, IRS call centers, and passport offices will be closed.
  • Military pay will not be delayed. President Obama signed a bill into law that protects troops from the shutdown.
  • VA hospitals will remain open and veterans will continue to receive their benefits. However, some services will be disrupted. The Veterans Benefits Administration will not process education and rehabilitation benefits. The government shutdown also threatens the progress made on the VA backlog.

 

 
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