WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Steve Daines (R-MT), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Mike Enzi (R-WY), John Barrasso (R-WY), Jim Risch (R-ID), Mike Lee (R-UT), and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) on Friday introduced legislation – the End Government Shutdowns Act – that will permanently prevent the federal government from shutting down, ensuring that essential government services aren’t disrupted and protecting taxpayers who must bear the resulting cost.
The measure will create an automatic continuing resolution (CR) for any regular appropriations bill or existing CR, keeping the federal government open when budget negotiations falter before key spending deadlines, according to a news release from the office of Sen. Portman.
“It’s disappointing that both sides didn’t resolve this matter weeks ago. Shutdowns inevitably costs taxpayers more money once the government reopens. I hope that both parties come together and reach an agreement that brings a resolution to this issue as quickly as possible,” Portman said.
“Moving forward, we should end government shutdowns for good. This bipartisan legislation will accomplish that goal, providing lawmakers with more time to reach a responsible resolution to budget negotiations, giving federal workers and their families more stability, and ensuring we avoid disruptions that ultimately hurt our economy, taxpayers and working families.”
“It costs money to shut down the government and it costs more money to reopen it,” Grassley said. “When the government shuts down, Americans are deprived of essential services and their tax dollars are needlessly wasted. Shutdowns also erode the trust between citizens and their government. This legislation would help ensure that policy stalemates and political interests would no longer get in the way of government’s duty to serve the American people. It would also create additional certainty and confidence in the government’s ability to function on behalf of the citizens it serves.”
“Shutdowns are not a responsible way to govern. They create instability and unpredictability not only in our government, but also for the many families and businesses that interact with the federal government,” Lee said. “Sen. Portman’s End Government Shutdowns Act strikes a necessary balance between incentivizing good budgeting habits while discouraging last-minute, haphazard stopgap funding measures. And it provides stability and predictability without allowing Congress to pat ourselves on the back for averting a self-made crisis.”