SC congressmen give no timetable on end to shutdown - - Columbia, South Carolina

SC congressmen give no timetable on end to shutdown


Two members of South Carolina's Congressional delegation are giving their honest opinions on the shutdown that has crippled the U.S. government.

Congressman Jim Clyburn says he cannot put a timeline on how long the government shutdown will last because certain Republicans "camped in" on shutting down the government when they were elected last year.

Clyburn said those 42 Republicans, who he did not identify by name, were holding fast on the shutdown.

"And until [Speaker of the House John Boehner] is willing to bring a bill to the floor, irrespective of their wishes, they can't seem to get anywhere," said Clyburn.

But if Boehner and his caucus were to at least bring a clean bill to the floor without any policy riders on defunding or delaying parts of the Affordable Care Act, Clyburn says the bill would pass.

"The moment a bill comes to this floor, even with the Republican numbers, that keeps the government open," said Clyburn. "The vast majority of both Democrats and Republicans will vote for it."

Instead, House Republicans have been focusing on passing bills funding individual portions of the government.

"It was aimed at particularly at the National Guard and Reserve members," said Congressman Joe Wilson. "We had previously passed legislation. It was an initiative of the Republican conference to certainly pay our American troops."

Wilson is one of several members of the Palmetto State delegation who have decided to withhold his pay during the shutdown. According to Wilson, the pay issue is all about fairness.

"I fully understand people who are being furloughed, they have mortgage payments, house payments, they have car payments, they have utility payments. These are ongoing. And these are commitments made. And I want them to know that if there is a challenge to their income as there has been, then the same would apply to me," said Wilson.

As for any final thoughts that would reassure the American people that Congress was working toward a solution to the shutdown and perhaps a resolution on raising the debt ceiling, neither congressman was willing to speculate.

"Well, usually when I make projections, it's based on the experiences I've had with reasonable people," said Clyburn. "When you're dealing with people who aren't reasonable, it is almost impossible to make any projections."

"I'm always hopeful," said Wilson. "First of all, I did not anticipate it to occur, and I'm startled because it benefits no one."

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