Americans do not seem too worried about the possibility that the Department of Homeland Security will run out of money and shutdown on Saturday — on the contrary, lawmakers say they few constituents even asked about the impact of a closure, the National Journal
Idaho Republican Sen. James Risch told the Journal that he had traveled around his state talking to hundreds of constituents in the course of a recent week. "But as I stand here, I can't recall one ordinary person who raised this issue," the Journal reported.
"These kinds of things, unless they have widespread consequences, they become much more inside-the-Beltway issues," Risch said.
Missouri Republican Sen. Roy Blunt indicated he, too, had not heard much from back home about DHS. Fellow Republican Sen. Susan Collins reported only "a little bit" of interest in the DHS issue, mostly from airport workers, whose pay could be affected, for the Transportation Security Administration as she made her way back to D.C.
The Georgia constituents of GOP Sen. Johnny Isakson are more worried about what the country planned to do to counter the Islamic State (ISIS) group than the DHS funding issue, he told the Journal.
Some 60 percent of Americans said they were not following the potential DHS shutdown issue closely, The Huffington Post
reported. Younger people, especially, seemed oblivious. By a margin of 40 to 32 percent, however, more Americans would blame the Republicans than President Barack Obama for any shutdown.
An earlier CNN poll
found that 45 percent thought a DHS shutdown would be, at most, a minor problem. Some 15 percent described it as a looming crisis while 40 percent said it would be a major problem.
Most Border Patrol and Secret Service agents would keep working as would Transportation Security Administration staffers even in the event of a shutdown. About 85 percent of DHS civilian and military employees deemed essential are expected to remain on the job, The Washington Post
Risch said that people would sit up and take notice only if their lives were directly affected.
"If they can't get on an airplane, that's a different ballgame," he told the Journal.
The longer workers are not paid, the more likely it is that the impact of any shutdown would be more widely felt, according to the Journal.
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