How far are President Obama and congressional Democrats willing to go to shift blame for the government shutdown to House Republicans? The list is steadily lengthening, but it is instructive to review the examples thus far as the shutdown enters a second week:
– World War II veterans: When a delegation of aged Mississippi veterans of World War II showed up at their memorial last week, they encountered barricade fences erected by the National Park Service to block access to the expansive, open-air facility. Aided by sympathetic House Republicans, the vets pushed the political barricades aside. When a similar scene happened the next day, Park Service officials “allowed” access for the visiting vets — many in their 80s and unlikely ever to have another chance for such an occasion — in consideration of their First Amendment rights. It was the first of a series of cheap shots by the Obama administration.
– On the other side of the country, a Nevada couple were given 24 hours to leave because their home rested on federal land. Ralph and Joyce Spencer, 80 and 77 years old, respectively, did as ordered. The NPS told a local news outlet that “unfortunately, overnight stays are not permitted until a budget is passed and the park can reopen.” The Spencers have been “overnighting” in their home for more than three decades.