Gohmert speaks frankly on government shutdown
POSTED: Monday, October 7, 2013 - 10:33am
UPDATED: Tuesday, October 8, 2013 - 11:08am
Washington, D.C. (Office of Louie Gohmert) —
U.S. Representative Louie Gohmert released the following statement concerning the government shutdown and the destructive government healthcare takeover:
“Although the government is officially 'shutdown,' my office is open, receiving calls, emails and other correspondence. We continue to engage in committee hearings, generating laws, case work, participating in debate, preparing proposals, studying proposals, and educating others on the issues. My staff has been working every day and well into most every night and on weekends as we seek to negotiate solutions to the Obamacare nightmare.
CNBC just reported the first week of Obamacare signups had a 99% failure rate. They have had over three and a half years to get this done, wasting billion upon billions of dollars so far—Republicans say it’s time to stop and assess whether we are just throwing good money after bad.
The payroll checks of my staff members are now suspended until the Obama-Reid shutdown is over. Even though the Constitution does not permit a Congress member’s pay to be adversely changed within a current term (to prevent political abuse of the process), I directed the Treasury Department to suspend my check as well. I cannot be treated better than those who are working with me in this fight or others whom the Democrat-led Senate refuses to vote to pay. House Republicans will continue to push the Democrats and the President to do their jobs and agree to pay for all those things on which we agree. That’s a core part of the legislative process. I’m optimistic despite a White House official’s comment, that Democrats don’t care how long this shutdown lasts, since they believe they are “winning.” They apparently see this as some kind of game, which is shocking in its arrogance and callousness. We are trying to preserve and protect this nation. Federal law allows the office of each member of Congress to employ a total of 18 full-time and four part-time employees. I have always endeavored to keep employment to a minimum so that I can be a good steward with taxpayer funds. We have four less full-time employees than we are authorized to have. We have furloughed one of our part-time employees, a paid intern, and we will continue to assess the circumstances as they unfold. In the House of Representatives, we have cut our member office overhead by approximately 18 percent over the past three years at the direction of our Republican leadership. The Senate, under Democrat leadership, did not cut their overhead spending even a dime.
The White House did not cut its overhead at all, nor did any of these federal agencies that have grown by such extravagant proportions since President Obama took office. They continue to borrow and spend and fritter away the future of our children and grandchildren, while demanding that we continue to be just as wasteful as last year. If a family can’t pay its bills one year, they don’t decide the next year that they should continue to spend like they did the year before. They look at last year’s spending and try to find things they don’t need pay for again. The same goes for the federal government – nobody believes our spending is in order, so we should not capitulate and continue to spend more money we don’t have. This is a critical a time in Congressional history. The President and the Senate Democrats refuse to negotiate with Members of the People’s House to make any changes whatsoever to the outlandish amounts spent by the federal government last year.
And even more catastrophic to the American people, as the Obamacare calamity unleashes its damage to our healthcare system nationwide, the President and Senate Democrats refuse to allow any changes to this national nightmare. The voters of the First District of Texas have entrusted me with the stewardship of this honorable office. It is a responsibility I do not take lightly. We run a lean operation with a smaller number of employees than allotted in our offices and at this point need all of the remaining hands we have on deck in this fight for the future of America.”