On Tuesday, President Obama ordered all national parks closed, putting up barricades around the World War Two Memorial Park on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Despite the barricades, octogenarian veterans removed the obstructions and entered the site. In response, Obama brought in furloughed park officers to reinforce the closure, but the next day veterans again defied the president’s edict.
On the Tonight Show last night, Jay Leno asked former Speaker Newt Gingrich what’s different between the shutdown of ’95 and today’s government shutdown? Gingrich responded that he and the Republican controlled Congress shut down government to bring Clinton to the negotiating table in order to pass a balanced budget. Clinton takes credit for the balanced budget that was forced on him by Republicans for his last four years.
Gingrich went on to say that in all previous government shutdowns, twelve of which were done by the Democrat controlled Congress during the Reagan years to force increased spending, no national parks, museums, or monuments were closed. The speaker gave examples of closures ordered by Obama such as Mount Vernon, which is privately funded, but the president closed the parking lots that are on federal land. Obama said in an interview last night that he has bent over backwards to work with Republicans and has toned down his rhetoric. Tea Party Patriots scoffed at this asking what Obama’s idea of unleashed rhetoric would be if his demonizing of conservatives is “toned down.”