WASHINGTON — No shortage of hyperbole has accompanied the ongoing budget debates threatening to end in a government shutdown this week. And the perpetrators, it can reasonably be argued, come from both sides of the aisle.
Rajiv Shah, the president’s administrator of USAID, raised the specter of 70,000 children dying as a byproduct of passing the Republicans’ budget. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton (D -D.C.) called the idea of a shutdown the “functional equivalent of bombing innocent civilians.” And House Appropriations Committee Chair Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) equated support of a one-week stopgap measure that would fund the Pentagon for the remainder of the year with lawmakers’ personal appreciation of the armed forces.
“If you vote against this bill,” Rogers said Thursday on the House floor, “you are voting against the troops.”