Carper, Coons: government shutdown would distract from serious, long-term fiscal challenges.

Delaware’s two US Senators have joined a group of Democratic lawmakers urging House Speaker John Boehner to avoid a government shutdown, which looms this Friday. 

Senators Tom Carper and Chris Coons are two of 16 Democratic Senators who have signed a letter to the Republican Speaker of the House urging him to kee the government running.  They say a shutdown would “serve as a counterproductive attack on our economic recovery.”

The Democratic lawmakers cite economists who warn that suspending government services, including the processing of paper tax returns and refunds, would have a “measurably detrimental impact on our economic output.”  They say a bipartisan deal is within reach to cut tens of billions of dollars from current federal funding levels.

The Obama administration Wednesday warned of other possible effects of a shutdown:   national parks would close, access to government-guaranteed home mortgages would be reduced, and availability of small business loans would be limited.

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky has accused Democrats of “rooting for” a government shutdown, saying they have come up with no concrete ideas for reducing the deficit.

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