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Beyer bill to give federal employees affected by government shutdown back pay passes House

Don BeyerRep. Don Beyer (D-VA) today hailed House passage of the legislative text of his bill to give back pay to federal employees in agencies affected by the partial government shutdown, which was included in a larger appropriations package that passed the House of Representatives last night with bipartisan support.

He also addressed President Trump’s threat to continue his government shutdown for “months or even years.”

Beyer said:

“Federal workers are used to being treated horrendously by this President and GOP leaders in Congress, but House Democrats have now demonstrated in our first days on the job that we are prepared to use our majority to shield them from his worst designs.

“Yesterday I joined my colleagues in passing legislation on a bipartisan basis to reopen the government and end the Trump shutdown. The spending package which we passed included the legislative text of my bill to give back pay to federal employees affected by the shutdown. I thank my colleagues for supporting this bill, and House Democratic leaders for including it in the appropriations legislation.

“Democrats from the National Capital Region also succeeded in ending the Holman Rule, which House Republicans had used to try to punish civil servants over political disputes, and joined our colleagues in passing a bipartisan provision to undo the Trump pay freeze for federal workers in 2019. We are delivering positive results for our constituents and the millions of civilian federal workers who run the government.

“Meanwhile Donald Trump refuses to budge on his demands that taxpayers waste billions on a wall that he repeatedly promised Mexico would pay for. He is keeping the government closed and forcing hundreds of thousands of federal workers to work without pay or remain furloughed. This afternoon, he threatened to extend his shutdown for ‘months or even years.’ Any such closure would do incalculable and lasting damage to the federal workforce, the services they provide to Americans, and the U.S. economy.

“Further, even as rank-and-file federal employees face extreme hardship and uncertainty which he has inflicted on them with shutdowns and pay freezes, Trump’s senior political appointees and Vice President Pence are reportedly in line to receive thousands of dollars in raises. This unfair treatment is disgusting and unacceptable.

“Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell knows that the government shutdown cannot be allowed to drag on for ‘months or even years’ without bringing on a profound crisis for our country. He can end this shutdown by working with House Democrats to pass the same legislation his own members backed unanimously last month, and he should do so immediately.”

Congressman Beyer represents the largest number of federal employees of any Member of the House of Representatives.