WASHINGTON — U.S. Sens. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) and Gary C. Peters (D-Mich.), chairman and ranking member of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, released the following statement after the committee advanced the Government Shutdown Accountability Act during today’s business meeting on a bipartisan 10-2 vote:
“Government shutdowns hurt people, damage our economy and benefit no one. Politicians have talked for years about ending government shutdowns without taking action. Today, we took a significant step to hold Congress responsible for doing its job. There’s still more work to be done on the bill we passed out of our committee with strong bipartisan support. We sincerely hope the Senate follows our lead and passes this legislation so we can end government shutdowns once and for all.”
The Government Shutdown Accountability Act ends government shutdowns by forcing Congress to fund the government: it cannot take a break (go on recess), members can’t use taxpayer dollars to travel, and with few exceptions the House and Senate can only vote on spending bills. As amended by the committee, when a lapse in appropriations occurs, the government would remain open at current funding levels and members would not receive pay while Congress works to pass a spending bill.
A copy of the legislation can be found here and additional comments from Sen. Johnson about the bill can be seen below.