Article from Reason by Eric Boehm.

Government shutdowns are all the rage in Washington right now. We just had one a few weeks ago. Now, the president is already calling for another.

But while the prospect of shutting down the federal government might sound appealing, the reality of a government shutdown is expensive, wasteful, and therefore counterproductive to fiscal responsibility. The continuous threat of a government shutdown if Congress doesn’t enact a budget (or at least a three-week-long continuing resolution) doesn’t seem to be creating incentives for better fiscal stewardship. If anything, it’s doing the opposite. Restarting the government on Jan. 23 after a three-day shutdown required Congress to authorize an additional $31 billion in borrowing.

Rather than continuing to careen from near-shutdown to actual shutdown and back again, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) wants to force Congress to pass a budget by imposing a penalty that’s sure to give most of Washington nightmares: a 1 percent budget cut.

Under the terms of Paul’s Government Shutdown Prevention Act, which he introduced last month, Congress would agree to ongoing continuing resolutions that would kick-in if a budget was not passed on time. The catch is that the automatic CR would come with an automatic, across-the-board cut of 1 percent for all government agencies. After 90 days, if there is no budget deal, funding would be reduced by another 1 percent.

Read the entire article at Reason.

Image Credit: Gage Skidmore [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons