|"Worst thing that happens is some museums close," is the message Fox Republicans and Fox News are now desperately trying to convey to their conservative viewers. But that can't be further from the truth.
As many as 800,000 of the country's 2.1 million federal workers are being furloughed as the result of a shutdown. The head of the Environmental Protection Agency says that the regulator would "effectively shut down" without a deal to fund the government. The EPA can't pay its employees and most of its regulatory functions have been put on hold until a deal is reached.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have had to halt a critical seasonal influenza program that monitors the spread of the flu, while most of the routine FDA food safety inspections have been also suspended.
The country's national parks have also been forced to close without a government funding deal, as have the Smithsonian Museums.
Remember when conservatives were outraged when White House tours had to be temporarily closed during the sequester deal failure? Saying President Obama was taking it out on the children of America? The Republican's level of hypocrisy is just unbelievable, and their reckless actions incomparable to the what will actually end up adding to the budget deficit.
The American youth and mothers that truly are being affected this time are the women, infants and children that rely on the support of the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), program that provides healthy food for low-income pregnant women and new moms. Also being affected are patients and children with cancer that will be turned away from National Institutes of Health clinical trials.
At the National Institutes of Health, nearly three-quarters of the staff was furloughed. One result: director Francis Collins said about 200 patients who otherwise would be admitted to the NIH Clinical Center into clinical trials each week will be turned away. This includes about 30 children, most of them cancer patients, he said.
Farenthold's district isn't immune to the shutdown, either. Especially home buyers.
KRISTV-Corpus Christi News reported the day before the shutdown that lenders are worried about backup of loan approvals at IRS. "Another problem with the impending shutdown is loan approvals, since getting those requires an IRS document. That could also cause a backup the market that at least one lender shared concern over today."
A Corpus Christi woman looking for a home to reunite her family could lose home due to delay in federal loans. Most homes in the Coastal Bend use FHA, VA and USDA mortgage loans and some realtors and buyers are worried about the impact of a government shutdown. Lorraine Wolff is looking for a home to reunite her family and save them money. Wolff's lender at Navy Federal told her if a government shutdown lasts more than a few days, it could have a big impact. "If a seller does not want to extend, we could lose the property," said her realtor Shirley Soriano, "and that's a lot of money, they lose earnest money, they lose inspection money."
Corpus Christi realtor are very nervous of the effect that an extended shutdown would have on the business in the area. Soriano estimates about 80% of her business is VA or FHA and that means if the government shutdown happens for an extended period of time, it could really halt sales here in our area. "I'm beginning to get very nervous about it because I do a lot of VA's," Sorainao said.
Statement from Texas Democratic Party Chairman Gilberto Hinojosa:
"Blake Farenthold couldn't be more out of touch. He sees the government shut down as a political game, and couldn't care less about the real harm he is causing hard working folks in his district. Today Texans did not wake up to a "paid vacation," they woke up to uncertainty about when they can get back to work, and whether they will be able to pay their upcoming bills. Farenthold and his Tea Party Republican posse pushed Texas over shutdown cliff, and they will be held accountable for all the harm they are doing to our great state."
But of course none of these people matter to Republicans. It isn't the first time Republicans have turned their backs on them, and it won't be the last time. That is, until Republicans stop being elected to office.
This is what voters of Farenthold's district need to keep in mind come 2014: They have a choice. Because Farenthold's seat isn't completely immune by gerrymandering. This is one seat Democrats can fight to take back.