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Congresswoman Clarke Warns of Government Shutdown

Brooklyn, N.Y. – Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke released the following statement warning that, despite a budget agreement between Democrats and Republicans in December, the federal government will shut down on January 15, 2014 unless Congress enacts specific spending proposals.

“Unfortunately, we find ourselves once more at risk of a shutdown of the federal government,” said Congresswoman Clarke. “We should not forget the lessons we learned last year, when a seventeen-day shutdown reduced our Gross Domestic Product by $20 billion, prevented Americans from visiting national parks and monuments, and delayed services provided by federal agencies. The previous government shutdown was a self-inflicted wound to our nation, for which millions of people had to suffer unnecessarily.”

During the federal government shutdown from October 1 to October 17, 2013, more than 800,000 public employees on indefinite unpaid leave, several thousand people who work for private companies could not work, tax refunds from the Internal Revenue Service were delayed, some of the courts that handle immigration proceedings were closed, and 19,000 children lost access to the Head Start Program.

Congresswoman Clarke continued: “We cannot afford to undermine our economy with another shutdown the government.  Americans want Congress to focus on resolving critical matters such as immigration reform and the extension of unemployment benefits, not distractions.”

U.S. Representative Yvette D. Clarke is a member of the House Committee on Small Business, Ethics, and Homeland Security, where she is the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Security Technologies. She represents many neighborhoods in central and southern Brooklyn, NY which include Brownsville, Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Gerritsen Beach, Madison, Midwood, parts of Park Slope and Flatlands, Prospect Heights, Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, Sheepshead Bay, and Windsor Terrace.

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