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To the editor:
With the big flood and the imminent shutdown of our government, we New Yorkers faced a disaster of almost Biblical proportions. Imagine if God told Noah to prepare for the Big Flood, but warned him that political chaos lay ahead, and God couldn’t guarantee the survival of the human race. With global warming looming and its effects threatening much of our nation, we might wish for a guarantee of no damaging tornadoes, storms and major fires for 45 days.
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy stunned Washington and the extreme MAGA-Republicans, including Matt Gaetz and Marjorie Taylor Greene, when he compromised and sided with moderate Republicans and Democrats to back a bill to fund the government for 45 days.
He avoided a government shutdown without imposing spending cuts or tightened border security demanded by the radical right. In doing so, McCarthy told Gaetz, Greene and other maga-radicals that they no longer control the Republican Party.
Whatever Donald Trump will say during his rallies, he won’t have quite the same power after McCarthy’s retreat. Of course, the shutdown could come on November 17, but the moderate Republicans will have a bigger say in government spending.
A government shutdown would have risked millions of poor Americans’ access to food assistance programs and other programs critical to health and survival. Moody’s, a major credit rating agency, said that a shutdown would harm the rating. This could lead to higher interest rates on the national debt and seriously damage our economy.
The next 45 days will give us some information about which side of the Republican Party will prevail, and whether Trump and his Congressional acolytes will retain their political power. I think McCarthy’s retreat has damaged their chances already.
Michael J. Gorman
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