It somehow seems like fitting symbolism that the Obama Administration has closed the Liberty Bell and the Statue of Liberty from the public due to the government shutdown. As the shutdown continues, the Obama Administration has begun a campaign to make the government shutdown as visible as possible to the American people to try and highlight the effects of the shutdown which Democrats consistently claim to be the result of Republican recalcitrance. On Tuesday, TPNN reported that World War II veterans who travelled to pay their respects at the National World War II Memorial in D.C were barred from the premises due to the government’s reaction to the shutdown. Thankfully, the veterans of the Greatest Generation pushed through the gates. Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill went to the WWII memorial and confronted the veterans groups that have assembled there to protest the closing of memorials to make a political point. Sen. McCaskill accused the Tea Party of “playing politics.” However, according to the National Park Service, they were ordered by the White House to barricade memorials. Tea Party Congressman Steve Stockman noted via twitter, “These memorials stay open at all times, even during holidays and government shutdown. Obama went out of his way to order them closed.” Obama has also declared that he intends to veto House spending bills that would restore funding for veteran benefits. It is painfully clear that the President, who has maintained that a shutdown would hurt Americans, is intending to make the government shutdown as noticeable and painful as possible to the American people. This is hardly a new maneuver as this same tactic was employed earlier this year, and continues today, in response to the Democrats’ disappointment with the sequestration cuts for which they had previously bargained to obtain an increase of the debt ceiling. When confronted with the stark reality that they would have to abide by their agreement to trim a measly 2.4% from expected spending growth, the Obama Administration went to work making these cuts as visible as possible while blaming Republicans. The President shuttered the White House, the people’s house, from visitors but still continues with lavish concerts, personal events and taxpayer-funded vacations for the entire family, including a $100 million tour of Africa for the extended Obama family. Internal emails amongst federal employees revealed in March that the Obama Administration had reminded federal employees to not evenly distribute their budgetary cuts, but to make cuts in places that will reaffirm their narrative that the sequester cuts would prove damaging to federal output. While maintaining that Republicans are being stubborn, President Obama has lashed out repeatedly at Republicans who refuse to cave under his and Democrats’ threats. While the President continues to try and make Americans suffer to bolster anti-Republican sentiment, his victimization of veterans might just be kicking a hornets nest of patriotism.
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