Why isn’t the White House paying the military during this shutdown if they were paid in 1995? Update: Explained

posted at 6:11 pm on April 7, 2011 by Allahpundit

Via Ace, Big Government’s Mike Flynn asks a very good question.

During the 1995 shutdown, the Clinton Administration followed the OMB guidance issued during the Reagan Administration. The Obama Administration, it seems, is tacking a different direction.

Let me be clear, the guidelines proposing to hold military paychecks are, according to the news reports, draft guidelines. It is possible the Obama Administration has abandoned these punitive guidelines. And, even if they implemented these guidelines, military personnel would most likely eventually receive their pay, once a budget agreement is reached. But, why even change the policy and subject our military to partisan political battles. The policy is certainly a change, but it doesn’t provide much hope.

Hopefully, they will clear this up quickly.

Read this CNN story or Air Force Times piece from last month for further background. If The One can continue payments to the military without having to agree to Boehner’s new short-term budget resolution, then why doesn’t he do it? Unless … he wants a shutdown to happen because it’ll hurt Republicans, and thinks that deliberately withholding military pay will make it that much more painful for Republicans politically when the shutdown comes. Is there any other explanation for this? There may have been some sort of legislation passed since 1995 tying the White House’s hands but I don’t see it mentioned in the CNN piece or the Federal Times story linked by Flynn and can’t find anything via Google.

Speaking of Boehner’s resolution, it passed this afternoon 247-181. Fifteen Democrats voted yes and six Republicans voted no: Amash, Bachmann, Barton, Steve King, Mulvaney, and of course Ron Paul. That’s all that’s left of the 54 Republicans who voted no on Boehner’s last short-term budget because they were tired of messing around with two-week funding measures. Amazing what high-stakes negotiations can do for party unity. Below you’ll find video of Boehner and Reid after this afternoon’s failed meeting at the White House. They’re headed back there tonight for another go at 7 p.m., with Boehner now asking for cuts in the neighborhood of $39 billion and Democrats offering a package in the ballpark of $34-35 billion. A major caveat, though:

In the case of the policy riders, Democrats said they have agreed to a number of the lesser Republican amendments. But there has been little give on the half-dozen highest priority items— impacting healthcare reform, family planning programs and the Federal Communications Commission’s “net-neutrality” rulemaking, for example. And Reid told Boehner that Republicans hurt their own cause this week by pushing for what proved to be a series of unsuccessful votes this week on the question of limiting the Environmental Protection Agency’s power to address global warming and greenhouse gases…

When asked if there were riders Boehner would shut the government over, he said “We’re going to continue to work our way through all of this and there’s no reason to draw any lines in the sand to make this more difficult than it already is.”

A fun fact about the GOP’s abortion rider to Boehner’s short-term budget, which appears to be the dealbreaker for Dingy and the rest of the gang: It hasn’t been a dealbreaker for liberals in the past. From John McCormack:

This policy, known as the Dornan amendment, has previously enjoyed bipartisan support: Indeed, Reid, Biden, Pelosi, and Obama have all voted for appropriations bills that included the Dornan amendment. President Obama signed the Dornan amendment into law in the fiscal year 2009 budget. It was only removed in the summer of 2009 by House Democrats–and even then 39 Democratic members of Congress took the extraordinary step of joining House Republicans to try to take down the rule on an appropriations bill in order to keep the Dornan amendment. It’s quite amazing that Harry Reid and President Obama are now insisting that taxpayer-funding of abortion is more important than a bill that funds the troops for a year and keeps budget negotiations going for another week.

Is it amazing? Democrats are also pretending tonight that it’s somehow outre to attach policy riders to budget bills at all, even though they’ve done it themselves many times in the past.

Another budget update coming later, after tonight’s meeting. 30 hours from a shutdown…

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Update: Aha, there is indeed an explanation for this. Military pay in 1995 wasn’t as simple as Clinton releasing the funds. There was a defense appropriations bill in effect during that shutdown. Via Gabe Malor, a report from the Congressional Research Service:

A frequent question is how this compares to the last government shutdown in 1995-1996. There were two shutdowns at that time, one of five days, from November 13 through November 19, 1995, and one of 21 days, from December 15, 1995 through January 5, 1996. The first shutdown was not long enough to affect pay checks, and DOD was not affected by the second because defense appropriations were enacted on December 1, so funding was available.

So it’s not The One’s fault that the military isn’t getting paid. (Well, it is insofar as he and Reid refuse to agree to Boehner’s new resolution, but it’s not solely his fault.) It’s actually … Reid’s and Pelosi’s fault for not passing a 2011 budget last year when they had a chance. The record stands corrected!


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Because this is the “Obama Reelection Government Shutdown”…

Just repeat this over and over again…

“Obama Reelection Government Shutdown”
“Obama Reelection Government Shutdown”
“Obama Reelection Government Shutdown”
“Obama Reelection Government Shutdown”
“Obama Reelection Government Shutdown”

1. They should have passed a budget last year
2. They could have passed a budget instead of going after DADT.
3. Almost all the Dems have voted for that abortion rider before.
4. Now Obama is going to purposely make the shutdown hurt as much as possible to our military in order to win PR points.

ninjapirate on April 7, 2011 at 6:15 PM

Tip

Oprah Throws Obama Under the Bus

Nearly Nobody on April 7, 2011 at 6:16 PM

Despicable, Barack Obama you are an evil evil man.

Daveyardbird on April 7, 2011 at 6:18 PM

Wrecking Ball!! to do list:

Healthcare……..check
Offshore Drilling…..check
Budget…..check
Constitutional precedent…..check
Military bogged down in unending conflicts…..check
Don’t pay Military families for cheap political points……check

Sounds like he is an LEFT WING EXTREMIST with a FAR LEFT AGENDA!!

PappyD61 on April 7, 2011 at 6:18 PM

Sorry, obaka. The troops will know who vetoed the bill. As will (do) their families.

Count it!

ladyingray on April 7, 2011 at 6:21 PM

“Is there any other explanation for this?”

Obowma thinks NATO is paying them…

Seven Percent Solution on April 7, 2011 at 6:21 PM

In the land of Unicorns, soldiers in combat are “non-essential”.

BobMbx on April 7, 2011 at 6:22 PM

PappyD61 on April 7, 2011 at 6:18 PM

You forgot ANWR and any/most on-shore drilling as well.

upinak on April 7, 2011 at 6:23 PM

Unless … he wants a shutdown to happen because it’ll hurt Republicans, and thinks that deliberately withholding military pay will make it that much more painful for Republicans politically when the shutdown comes. Is there any other explanation for this?

Nope. You pretty much nailed it. He need not worry though. The geniuses who elected him will gobble up the MSM’s explanation that this is all the Republican’s fault.

Kataklysmic on April 7, 2011 at 6:24 PM

The Left ‘loves’ the Military.

Schadenfreude on April 7, 2011 at 6:25 PM

If he wanted to avoid any blame, or even a little of the blame, he should have given this chance for ideological grandstanding a pass.

GOP said “pay the troops”, Obama said “pay the politicians”.
What an incredible jackass.

clnurnberg on April 7, 2011 at 6:25 PM

The troops will know who vetoed the bill. As will (do) their families.

ladyingray on April 7, 2011 at 6:21 PM

This is what I think is funny… and give me a sec to explain.

Not saying those military spouses here are even close to this, but many when I was in and while married to a soldier were very democratic.

How will those spouses deal with the fact that the dems and such won’t be paying their spouses for their duty.

I really do not miss military life.

upinak on April 7, 2011 at 6:27 PM

How about if we stop paying congress instead?

ExPat on April 7, 2011 at 6:27 PM

Since our senate and CinC are so hot to avoid paying the military in this budget fiasco, perhaps we should hold their paychecks also till the military gets paid! Bet the budget battle would be over quick at that point wouldn’t it!

Vntnrse on April 7, 2011 at 6:28 PM

Simple. The military is non-essential and their families don’t matter. If they want to matter they better join a Union. /the Libs

txmomof6 on April 7, 2011 at 6:34 PM

Unless … he wants a shutdown to happen because it’ll hurt Republicans, and thinks that deliberately withholding military pay will make it that much more painful for Republicans politically when the shutdown comes. Is there any other explanation for this?

tihs is a ludicrous interpretation…are you kidding me? Do you really think there is a single military member who as of right now doesn’t get that it is their Commander in Chief who is undermining and sabotaging them and their work in the theatre with his veto. There is enormous anger right now among military families and I can tell you for sure that no one is blaming the Republicans, but that SOB who occupies the WH fraudulently right now. Impeach him, NOW!

jimver on April 7, 2011 at 6:35 PM

Reid’s and Pelosi’s fault for not passing a 2011 budget last year when they had a chance. The record stands corrected!

Would the old media get out of O’s ars and report on this?

If not, suffocate in there, you derelict fools.

Schadenfreude on April 7, 2011 at 6:37 PM

The goal of the malign Anointed One is to create chaos and misery.

Dhuka on April 7, 2011 at 6:42 PM

I suggest that the military all come back for the 2012 elections or else the sates get their absentee ballot programs for the military fixed pronto so they can vote. It is also a military problem for not being able to interface better with the voting logistics. But just do it. To be in the military and not have your vote count is a a travesty. The voting and election bs that goes on in this country is shameful. Next thing you know,,,we will have international election inspectors…….. if we even have elections anymore.

retiredeagle on April 7, 2011 at 6:43 PM

Gov Palin weighs in via twitter:

“Presidential nonsense. MT”@ShannonBream: BREAKING! Pres will veto 1-week spending bill to avoid govt shutdown if Congress passes” So, now…$4T later, leaderless govt digs further debt, bickers over cutting peanuts – peanuts we don’t even have. It’s unsustainable! Let him shut it”

unseen on April 7, 2011 at 6:47 PM

I wonder how much the military would want – to attack the White House? We could raise that much, right?

docjohn52 on April 7, 2011 at 6:52 PM

Barry figures the military, for the most part, is conservative. So it’s no loss if they don’t get paid.

But their Commander in Chief will.

It’s always about Barry.

GarandFan on April 7, 2011 at 6:58 PM

I think the vote in Wisconsin shows that, in spite of everything, the tea party is still going strong. If Democrats had convinced themselves for a while that our resolve had dissipated, now they know better. Perhaps their arrogance really is as bloated as it seems, but I think they secretly know they will be blamed if they ignore November’s mandate and instead shut down the government.

My prediction is that the Democrats will cave for fear of a complete electoral meltdown in ’12 and beyond.

FloatingRock on April 7, 2011 at 7:01 PM

Military should get their money before anyone else does…should be a law.

Karmi on April 7, 2011 at 7:20 PM

I give the Democrats a lot of credit for playing a good game of hardball. They’re a lot better at bluffing than the Republicans are. If they shut down the government the numbers are not going to change, they’ll only harden and our resolve will only grow.

If the Democrats shut down the government and it seems to be backfiring on them, I think Beohner should clear the field and open the new round of government start-up negotiations with at least a full $100 billion in cuts to get the government going again. Think of it as priming the pump.

FloatingRock on April 7, 2011 at 7:24 PM

well, there you have it:

Reid’s and Pelosi’s fault for not passing a 2011 budget last year when they had a chance. The record stands corrected!

RealMc on April 7, 2011 at 7:24 PM

Wrecking Ball!! to do list:

Healthcare……..check
Offshore Drilling…..check
Budget…..check
Constitutional precedent…..check
Military bogged down in unending conflicts…..check
Don’t pay Military families for cheap political points……check
Sounds like he is an LEFT WING EXTREMIST with a FAR LEFT AGENDA!!
PappyD61 on April 7, 2011 at 6:18 PM

you forgot:

Control the food (monsato/farm bill)….check
Control the air they breath….check
Control education/student loans….check
Control the internet…check
contol the banks, what they drive, how they eat, CEO salaries, car companies, money supply…check, check, check, check, check, check..

the only thing missing is “a civillian army as well-funded and as well-trained as the military”… of course this is a sorta-check… SEIU, AFLCIO… etc!

Am4Constitution on April 7, 2011 at 7:31 PM

I thought Boehner’s CR included funding for the DoD which would extend to the end of the budget year whether or not Congress had to keep passing CR’s for everything else?

JM Hanes on April 7, 2011 at 9:45 PM

To be in the military and not have your vote count is a a travesty. The voting and election bs that goes on in this country is shameful. Next thing you know,,,we will have international election inspectors…….. if we even have elections anymore.

retiredeagle on April 7, 2011 at 6:43 PM

Agree whole heartedly with you. If they can serve in 3 wars at once surely they can make sure they can get home to vote or have a system that immediately counts their votes overseas. We do have algore’s internet now. There must be some security that would pass muster for voting.

wi farmgirl on April 7, 2011 at 10:57 PM

AP — although the point that there was a specific, stand-alone defense funding resolution in place in 1995 is correct, that fact doesn’t explain why there isn’t one now. It also doesn’t alter the fact that Obama intends to use executive discretion over what he does have now to pay for things other than military salaries.

Congress has two bills before it to ensure funding for military pay in the event of a government shutdown. As of today, 7 April, sponsors were still pressing for a vote in each house of Congress, but neither bill has been reported out of committee.

Republicans can pass the House bill (H.R. 1297) on party lines, and I don’t see why they haven’t done so. The Senate bill, S.724, has bipartisan sponsorship, and a bunch of Senate Democrats are assuring their home constituencies that they are for it. It can probably be passed in the Senate as well.

Please contact your senators and congressman about these bills by tomorrow morning.

J.E. Dyer on April 7, 2011 at 11:49 PM

Saw a dem rep on Greta last night and he kept pounding the notion that the Rs are holding out because of funding for PP. This is what it’s all about. Can’t cut funding for PP. It’s a few $M and Zero is causing all this grief over a baby killing abortion mill.

Kissmygrits on April 8, 2011 at 8:57 AM

It’s actually … Reid’s and Pelosi’s fault for not passing a 2011 budget last year when they had a chance.

And why didn’t they pass the DoD bill when they had the chance? Could it be that they wanted to end DADT as a part of the bill but knew that it wouldn’t pass, so they waited for opinion to swing their way…and they waited…and waited….and waited….

olesparkie on April 8, 2011 at 9:45 AM

The POUS said “800 thousand government employees will stay at home unable to go to work”. Soldiers will not get paid, dose that mean their Commander and Chief is telling them to leave the ranks and go home, and there will be no UCMJ action aginst them?

I think it’s time to put the silly side of this discussion up front to show the disfunction of our current Congress.

The military is different in that all daily needs are provided for in the budget. Dose a shut down mean,
1. Soldiers will not have any tolet papper?
2. Soldiers will not have any food to eat?
3. Can they Go home with out UCMJ action?
4. Air force 1 will be grounded for lack of fule?
5. Missle defense system shut down?
6. Open borders? No border patrols?
7. No home land security check points at air ports?
8. No Coast Guard protecting our water ways.

Lets all add to the silly list and send it to Congress.

jpcpt03 on April 8, 2011 at 10:12 AM