Senators Mark Udall (D-Colo.) and Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) introduced bipartisan legislation today to ensure that our men and women in uniform and civilians supporting them do not go without pay in the event Congress is unable or unwilling to get its fiscal house in order.
"Our men and women in uniform and our national security should not suffer if Congress is unable or unwilling to get the nation's fiscal house in order," Udall said. "This bipartisan bill ensures our brave men and women of our military -- and their families -- will be paid on time even if Congress irresponsibly allows a government shutdown to occur. I wish this legislation were not necessary, but in no other job is simply giving up or refusing to reach a pragmatic solution acceptable. We need to protect our military and critical civilian workers from the painful consequences of a government shutdown, and we can't allow either side to use troops as leverage in political disputes."
"The readiness of the troops serving this country, at home and deployed overseas, must not suffer due to the fiscal realities of Washington," Moran said. "Our military members deserve better than the uncertainty of a paycheck and worrying about how they will continue to care for their families. I am hopeful that the President and Congress will come together to confront our nation's challenges instead of pushing them off to a future date. For now, our military men and women should be spared the consequences of Washington's indecision. It is the least we can do for those who give so much."
In the event of a government shutdown, the Udall-Moran bill:
Allows paychecks to continue to members of the military and critical civilian workers deployed in combat zones or doing jobs critical to supporting operations; and,
Excludes critical civilian workers working in direct support of contingency operations from furloughs.