‘Floridians should not have to bear the brunt of House Republicans’ inability to lead’ | Opinion

With just little time remaining until a potential extreme-MAGA shutdown, I am mourning our government hitting rock bottom and the severe consequences for Florida families.

Floridians should not have to bear the brunt of House Republicans’ inability to lead. A shutdown would place our troops in the line of duty without pay, inflict harm upon small businesses, gamble with disruptions in air travel and jeopardize access to vital food assistance for our families. It is unconscionable that House Republicans would inflict such pain on hardworking families, jeopardize our economic stability and place our national security at risk.

I will continue to leverage every resource at my disposal to ensure the government remains operational and safeguard Florida families from the specter of a costly and reckless shutdown. It’s high time House Republicans do their damn jobs and end this irresponsible march towards a government shutdown.

A Republican government shutdown would mean:

102,413 active-duty and reserve personnel serving the nation’s armed forces in Florida would be forced to go without the pay they earn during a shutdown.

The Small Business Administration would stop processing loans, halting a program that provides $2,539,670,300 in funding to small businesses in Florida every year.

185,297 people flying through Florida airports every day would face potential delays and safety concerns because of staffing impacts on TSA agents and air traffic controllers.

421,294 people in Florida would soon lose access to Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) benefits.

115,126 federal workers in Florida would be furloughed or forced to work without pay, in addition to the many employees of businesses with government contracts who could be laid off, furloughed, or see their hours cut.

Workers at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) would be sidelined, risking interruptions and delays to the 1,117 food safety, pharmaceutical manufacturing, and other inspections conducted in Florida last year.

The Department of Agriculture would be forced to stop processing housing loans, which provide $437,011,602 in funding to help 2,067 families in rural Florida communities buy homes every year.

The Department of Agriculture would be forced to stop processing farm loans which provide $22,725,000 in funding for farmers in Florida every year.

3,023,426 Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) beneficiaries in Florida would lose access to benefits in a prolonged shutdown.

Every year, 14,399,363 people visit national parks in Florida. Those who would go during the shutdown would be turned away or unable to fully access parks, monuments and museums.

State governments would be forced to pay for federal services like the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, potentially risking benefits for the 49,026 TANF beneficiaries in Florida.

Democrats and the Biden-Harris administration have delivered a historic economic recovery that is growing the middle class and rebuilding American manufacturing, with 1,122,800 jobs created in Florida since President Biden took office. Republicans’ shutdown would undermine our nation’s economic progress and hurt working families.

Frederica S. Wilson represents Florida’s 24th congressional district, which includes parts of Miami, Miami Beach, North Miami, Miami Gardens and Miramar.