Starting at noon today, members of the Shenandoah Valley Tea Party stood outside Representative Bob Goodlatte’s Staunton office for an hour. Waving signs and chanting slogans, their purpose was threefold: to draw attention to the problem of massive federal spending, to encourage their elected representatives to vote against the continuing resolution for the budget, and for a return to some sort of fiscal sanity.
Today’s event brings us to an important question; is the Tea Party upset with Representative Goodlatte? Although one of the members commented that the Representative was right on “99% of the issues”, she firmly stated that he can and should take a leading role to reduce the runaway debt and spending.
After the rally (or protest depending on your definition of the word), the Tea Party presented the Representative’s office a document signed by around fifty of his constituents in support of their cause. With the deadline for the continuing budget resolution looming at the end of this week, we will soon discover what impact groups like the Tea Party will have on our elected officials.
However, a few questions linger. Can the government maintain a balanced budget? Will we ever pay off our staggering federal debt? Do our Representatives and Senators have the sheer force of will to enact meaningful cuts in our bloated budget or will they continue the status quo? And, if there is no agreement, will the government suffer a shutdown of nonessential functions due to funding issues like what briefly happened back in 1995? If so, what impact, if any, will this potential decrease of services have on the lives of the average American?