Here’s what Long Island’s representatives in Congress are saying about the shutdown of the federal government. U.S. Rep Steve Israel
Americans deserve a govt that stays open & a congress that communicates. Not a congress that communicates only after the govt shuts down.— Steve Israel (@RepSteveIsrael) October 1, 2013
U.S. Rep. Tim Bishop statement
“The House GOP has voted to ensure a harmful, and completely avoidable, shutdown of federal government operations beginning today. It is deeply reckless that the House leadership and its Tea Party-dominated caucus have abdicated their responsibility to govern and, instead, have chosen to pursue partisan political goals at the expense of the American people’s interests.
“I share the frustration of my constituents that Congress failed to reach an agreement to keep the government operating. However, having failed repeatedly to overturn the Affordable Care Act through the democratic and judicial processes, the House GOP has taken the government--and potentially the nation's full faith and credit--as a hostage. Funding the authorized operations of the government and paying our bills is not a concession to Democrats. It's our job.
“My GOP colleagues should not demand a ransom for simply fulfilling their responsibilities. That is not negotiating or governing in good faith. Giving in to these unreasonable demands would not only jeopardize affordable health coverage for millions of Americans but also further embolden those willing to use destructive tactics to get their way.
“I remain hopeful that there will be a change of heart among my colleagues and the destructive effects of this shutdown will be reversed soon. My offices on Long Island and in Washington will remain open to serve my constituents during this period. It is important to note that Social Security payments, and Medicare and Medicaid coverage are funded through a mandatory appropriations process and will not be affected.”
Yesterday, U.S. Rep. Peter King was one of 12 Republicans to vote against the GOP’s latest spending plan, which would have caused a delay in a provision of President Obama’s health care law.
"I was the only in conference who stood up and said I would vote no on the rule and the amendments. It's not something I take lightly," King said yesterday after a closed door House GOP conference meeting before the vote.
The official Web page of U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer states that his offices in Washington and through New York State are unable “to perform non-essential functions,” and won’t be able to respond to phone calls, faxes or email. “Senator Schumer and his staff are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause and look forward to serving the people of New York again as soon as possible,” the statement said.
On her Web page, U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand said: “I will continue to work with my Senate colleagues to resolve the funding issues. The current situation cannot stand and New Yorkers should not be asked to endure this funding lapse for any period of time.” Gillibrand’s office is also shut down.