With hope fading for a quick end to the government shutdown, members of Florida’s congressional delegation spent much of Tuesday preparing for the long haul — while also taking time to blame the other side for the first federal shutdown in 17 years.
Two lawmakers — U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., and U.S. Rep. Bill Posey, R-Rockledge — used the first day of the shutdown to immediately furlough many of their own staffers. About half of Posey’s 17-member staff will be working during the shutdown; even fewer are working for Rubio.
“We normally have about 57 full-time employees including both our [Washington] DC and in-state offices. The Orlando and [Washington] DC offices are still open, but running with a skeleton crew of only seven total employees who were not furloughed,” said Alex Conant, a Rubio spokesman.
That’s not the case for everyone.
“I have deemed them all essential,” Mica said.
But in a show of solidarity with his staff — who won’t get paid during the impasse — Mica said he has asked that his own $174,000 annual salary be withheld until the shutdown is finished. Posey went one step further and said that wouldn’t take a salary at all during the shutdown and instead would send that pay back to the U.S. Treasury each day that Congress and the White Housedidn’t reach an agreement.