Mitch McConnell Objected To Funding Soldiers During The Shutdown (Video)

International Business Times

After two days of a partial government shutdown, it appears as though the government will re-open after the Senate voted 81 to 18 to fund operations until February 8.

But the next time someone spouts to you the Fox News talking point about it being the Democrats’ fault the government shut down in the first place, that Democrats don’t care about our military, here’s how you can respond.

As the so-called “shithole shutdown” showdown was ensuing, Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) introduced a resolution on the Senate floor to allow military service members’ pay to continue, as it did during the 2013 shutdown.

Sen. McCaskill pronounced:

“I don’t want one moment to pass with there being any uncertainty of any soldier anywhere in the world that they will be paid for the valiant work they do on behalf of our national security.”

Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky) wasn’t having it, though.

He objected to the resolution, leaving military families in limbo as Republicans continue touting their affection for the military.

The military advocacy group VoteVets immediately accused Republicans of using the military “as a prop” to attack Democrats.

Government relations director Will Fischer tweeted:

“Veterans make-up 1/3 of the entire federal workforce & are being hit twice by the — missing paychecks and having benefits denied or delayed.”

In a statement to Shareblue Media, Fischer explained:

“It gets harder and harder to believe that Donald Trump and the Republicans want anything other than a shutdown, when they make military pay a key talking point, but then block Democrats’ bill to make sure our military is paid, during a shutdown. It’s becoming clear that shutting down the government, and holding people hostage for ransom, is the goal of Trump and Republicans. There simply is no other reason for Republicans to kill a Democratic measure to pay troops, other than to keep holding our troops and their families hostage. It’s disgusting.”

Vice President Mike Pence probably assumed the soldiers he was addressing this weekend in Israel weren’t aware of Sen. McCaskill’s  resolution when he took an opportunity to lie to them about the Democrats’ role in the shutdown.

He said:

“Despite bipartisan support for a budget resolution, a minority in the Senate has decided to play politics with military pay. But you deserve better. You and your families shouldn’t have to worry for one minute about whether you’re going to get paid as you serve in the uniform of the United States.”

He ought to talk to McConnell.

During the 2013 shutdown, former President Obama sent the following message to service members:

“If you’re serving in harm’s way, we’re going to make sure you have what you need to succeed in your missions. Congress has passed, and I am signing into law, legislation to make sure you get your paychecks on time. And we’ll continue working to address any impact this shutdown has on you and your families.”

How Republicans could control both houses of Congress and the White House, and still be beholden to Democrats is something the GOP knows most people won’t consider.

Image credit: International Business Times

Ted Millar is poet and teacher. His poetry has been in featured in myriad literary journals, including Caesura, Circle Show, Cactus Heart, Third Wednesday, and The Voices Project. He is also a contributor to Op-Ed News and Liberal Nation Rising.