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by Sharon Rondeau

The two chambers of the U.S. Congress agreed to raise the debt limit and reopen government departments after a 16-day partial shutdown because of a lack of appropriations

(Oct. 17, 2013) — The House and Senate reached agreement on Wednesday night to reopen closed government departments and raise the federal government’s debt ceiling.

The bill keeps government departments open until January 15, 2014 and raises the amount the federal government can borrow until February 7.  Under Obama, federal debt has mounted to $16.7 trillion.

While early in the shutdown, which began October 1, Obama had said he was not willing to negotiate on any Republican points of contention which had prevented an appropriations bill, he now says he will “work with anybody” to improve economic conditions and “strengthen the middle class,” which has been devastated by unemployment, the housing crisis which began in 2008, and a distressed economy.

Obama had promised to become conciliatory if Congress acceded to his demands of a higher debt ceiling and maintaining his health care bill, Obamacare, in place.

After failing to reach agreement by midnight on September 30, parts of the federal government were closed, including most of the Department of Agriculture (USDA), Housing & Urban Development (HUD), National Institutes of Health (NIH) and national parks and monuments.

Also during the shutdown, the Obama regime prohibited Catholic priests from saying mass and accessing Catholic chapels on military bases, but a lawsuit filed by the Thomas More Law Center garnered a concession and permission to resume religious services.

On September 20, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to fully fund the government without providing funding for Obamacare, the unpopular health care bill for which $634,000,000 was spent to prepare a federal online portal which is considered by many to be “a failure.”  Numerous organizations have filed lawsuits against the portion of the bill which forces religious institutions to provide abortifacients, birth control and other objectionable services to employees.  Some organizations have won temporary or full reprieves from the mandate.

Many individuals and businesses have reported significantly higher premiums and spikes in the cost of medications for ill children.  Renowned brain surgeon Dr. Ben Carson, who has been urged by some to run for president in 2016, said that Obamacare is “the worst thing to happen to the U.S. since slavery.”

The Senate would not agree to defund Obamacare, and negotiations stalled on September 30.

Following the October 1 shutdown, the House proposed 14 bills to reopen different government departments, respectively, which Obama said he would not sign and the Senate refused to consider.

On Wednesday, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee held a hearing lasting more than four hours during which various proprietors and National Parks Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis gave testimony of the effects of the shutdown on their respective locales and responsibilities.  Jarvis told the committee that he did not believe that national parks should come under the purview of the states, as Sen. Mike Lee of Utah suggested, and was told by Chairman Darrell Issa to expect a subpoena regarding documents which Jarvis’s office allegedly did not deliver to the committee over the last several months on the issue of the March 1 sequester.

Jarvis also said that he had received “orders” to close all 401 national parks and monuments.  A park ranger was quoted at the beginning of the shutdown as claiming that he was given orders to “make life as difficult as possible” for the public.

While veterans were reported to have had difficulty accessing the memorials during the 16-day shutdown, some Democrats on the panel denied those claims and said that veterans were treated respectfully by park rangers when they arrived, often on Honor Flights, which are provided free of charge to terminally-ill veterans.

Thursday was said by putative Secretary of the Treasury Jack Lew as the day on which the government would run out of money to pay its foreign creditors, although it was reported that debt payments could have been made without raising the debt ceiling.

Speaker of the House John Boehner said after the “deal” was reached that Republicans “fought the good fight.  We just didn’t win.”

Obama said on Thursday that “We’ve got to get out of the habit of governing by crisis,” although his former chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, said, “You never want a serious crisis go to waste.”

America’s Founding Fathers had warned against “excessive” national debt.

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  1. I am pretty sure most, if not all, folks in America know what B.S. stands for (except possibly some liberal colleges think it has something to do with “science”). And I really do hate to insult the male half of the bovine species. For you urban dwellers (some with that B.S. degree) the bull is the male, the cow is the female, the steer is the castrated bull. The castrated bull is not to be confused with John Boehner, who never was a bull to begin with.