Gov Actually Episode 29: An Idea to Prevent Future Government Shutdowns

Service members are greeted by locked doors at the Harriotte B. Smith library aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune due to a government shutdown, Oct. 1., 2013. (Photo By: Gunnery Sgt. Ryan E. O'Hare)


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We’re nearly four weeks into what’s already the longest federal government shutdown, and neither side seems to be budging on the battle to build a wall across the nation’s southern border.

But Gov Actually co-host Danny Werfel has an idea — one that he thinks could prevent future political budget debates from holding federal appropriations hostage.

It involves “a pool of resources that are intended to address border security, and there’s flexibility in how those funds can be used” based on prevailing business cases.

“I know in some ways, I’m kicking the can down the road a bit, but it is a legislative construct that allows both sides to walk away happy,” Danny says in the latest episode.

Of course, co-host Dan Tangherlin pushed back some, saying there are many other things at play here, like “a set of political and personality challenges that revolve around trust and good faith and partisanship.” There are “many, many vectors from this idea,” he said.

Dan did compliment Danny for coming to the table with a well thought-out, non-partisan idea, saying a big part of the problem is that neither side wants work with the other. “In any negotiation, to get to an outcome, both sides have to feel like they walk away with something.”

Listen to the podcast to see where Dan and Danny land in trying to figure out how to prevent future shutdowns from happening.

This isn’t the first time Gov Actually has talked about a shutdown. This time last year, the team discussed a much tamer lapse in appropriations and what it’s like to be a part of an agency that’s furloughed.

Catch all of the Gov Actually episodes on iTunes and SoundCloud.

Let us know what you think in the comments on iTunes.

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Danny Werfel, Dan Tangherlini, Gov Actually, shutdown