Senator: “It’s Time to Reopen the Government and Put an End to this Crisis”
U.S. Senator Jon Tester took to the Senate Floor today to tell folks the facts about President Trump’s government shutdown.
“There is a crisis taking shape in our country, but it’s not on the southern border,” Tester said. “As a result of the President’s shutdown, hardworking Americans are being forced to secure our country’s borders, ports, and airports without knowing when their next paycheck will arrive.”
Nineteen days after President Trump rejected legislation to fund large portions of the government, dozens of federal agencies remain closed and more than 800,000 workers aren’t getting paid as a result of the second longest shutdown in American history. And with over 14,000 federal employees, numerous Tribal Nations, and two of the busiest National Parks in the country, Montana has been one of the states hit hardest by the shutdown.
“The dysfunction of this administration is causing real turmoil in the lives of thousands of Montanans and their families,” Tester said. “It’s time to reopen the government and put an end to this crisis.”
In his speech, Tester told stories of suffering across Big Sky Country. Ronald from Sanders County has a son in the Coast Guard who is worried that his family could get evicted because he hasn’t received his monthly housing allowance. Shiloh from Bozeman is a federal employee whose pay has been suspended when he needs it most. And Debra from Rosebud County has two daughters who work for the Indian Health Service and are worried they won’t be able to buy groceries if they don’t receive a paycheck this week.
“Please stop this immoral shutdown,” Debra wrote to Tester. “It is very unfair to hardworking people like my daughters. They must work but will not get a paycheck this Friday if the shutdown continues.”
As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Tester helped write the legislation that the Senate passed last month to fund the government and provide over a billion dollars to secure the southern border. The House passed the same legislation last week. Reopening the government now depends on the President’s approval.