A government shutdown could damage our economy but might serve one useful purpose: focusing attention on obscenely inflated staffing levels for the president and Congress.
The White House announced a shutdown would force the Executive Office of the President to use a “bare bones” staff of just 436—with some 1,265 employees sent home. But are all those assistants really necessary once the crisis passes?
FDR fought Depression and World War with a staff that never topped 140; why does Obama need 12 times more aides? Could he survive with five speechwriters instead of 15? Could Vice President Biden function with 30 aides instead of 90? Would America collapse if the White House Delivery Team used 50 employees instead of today’s 215?
The President should set an example for the rest of the government by permanently shedding unnecessary, duplicative staff positions.