So over the weekend the United States government managed to avoid shutting down and putting roughly 800,000 people on a forced furlough. National Parks are open and people are able to get their home loans pushed through, their medicare sorted and the military won't see any delay in their paychecks arriving. Hooray. I know I'm not the only one who was slightly rubbed at the notion of the government shutting down because of the typical partisan bickering that seems to dominate in D.C.
Why were we near a shutdown? Well, the Democrats say it had nothing to do with finances and that it was all about the Republicans desire to cut funding for programs like Planned Parenthood. At the center of all of this, of course, is the ongoing abortion debate. The Republicans countered that it was entirely fiscal in nature and that they simply were pushing for more spending cuts. Who was telling the truth? Who knows.
In the end, a shutdown was avoided. From what the pundits are saying, the Republicans blinked on the Planned Parenthood issue and the Dems blinked right back on the spending cuts. What we ended up with was what some are calling the largest spending cut in American history. The battle is far from over though, as CNN points out here in this article on the real budget war that's looming.
Sigh. I say "get your act together, Washington." What do you folks think about all of this?
Also - in case you don't know what Planned Parenthood does, here's a breakdown of where their money goes.