Jordan LaPier
(202) 495-3320

The looming government shutdown is an abdication of congressional responsibility  

November 13, 2023

WASHINGTON – The nonpartisan, nonprofit Partnership for Public Service today released the following statement from president and CEO Max Stier urging Congress to reach agreement on government funding and avert a government shutdown at the end of this week. 

“Congress is once again barreling toward a government shutdown, creating great uncertainty regarding the delivery of critical public services. Agencies and their employees deserve to have predictability about funding levels and the resources necessary to conduct their work on behalf of the people they serve.  

“Since the last shutdown threat, continued dysfunction in Congress has further threatened public trust in our government. In fact, an online survey conducted by the Partnership in September just prior to passage of a short-term funding bill on Oct. 2 found that 68% of respondents said a shutdown would decrease their confidence in our government. Further, in the same survey, 54% of respondents agreed that a government shutdown would impact them personally. 

“Beyond the damage to public trust, shutdowns waste billions of dollars in taxpayer money, impair government’s ability to address long-term problems, erode America’s standing on the world stage at a time of multiple conflicts around the globe and harm hard-working public servants.  

“Right now, two million federal employees plus 1.3 million active-duty military personnel are planning their Thanksgiving holiday not knowing if they will be without their paychecks. Meanwhile, employees deemed “excepted,” including air traffic controllers, Transportation Security Agency and border patrol agents, health care workers at VA hospitals and others will still report for work during a shutdown, but without getting paid. At no other job would employees be expected to work without pay. 

“Congress must act to keep the government open, even if that means another stopgap funding measure. Then, Congress must enact reforms to prevent this dysfunctional process from ever occurring again and undermining faith in our nation’s most important democratic institution.” 

During the past 22 years, the nonpartisan, nonprofit Partnership for Public Service has been dedicated to building a better government and a stronger democracy. We work across administrations to help transform the way government works by providing agencies with the data insights they need to succeed, developing effective leaders, inspiring the next generation to public service, facilitating smooth presidential transitions and recognizing exceptional federal employees. Visit, follow us @PublicService and subscribe today to get the latest federal news, information on upcoming Partnership programs and events, and more.