Open Letter to My Floridian Congressmen

**I wrote this letter this morning, and it has been sent to Senators Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio, and Representative Jeff Miller.**

Good Afternoon Gentlemen!

While reading the news this morning, I came across an article in the Army Times with a warning from Representative Young that my family’s October paycheck might be affected by the impending government shutdown. Rep. Young said that “All military personnel will continue to serve and accrue pay, but will not actually be paid until appropriations are available.” That seems funny to me: my husband will still work as hard as ever, yet might not be paid? I think we can all agree that this situation wouldn’t be right.

Do you forget that it takes more to run a military family than unadulterated patriotism and thank-you’s from loving supporters? We (believe it or not) depend on that good ole American currency to pay off our house payments, car payments, student loans, and other assorted bills – food is also nice. Some of us have children we have to care for, and while I have no personal knowledge of those creatures, my sources tell me that they, too, require food and shelter. I know my animals do. The majority of our paycheck goes to our bills, though we do put some away for an emergency fund. It’s strange though: I always thought that an emergency would be more along the lines of an emergency flight out of state for a deceased family member or maybe an emergency trip to the vet. But no – the upcoming account-draining emergency stems from incompetent political leaders trying to play a game of “King of the Hill.” How dare you play these games with our bank accounts?

You see, Congress promises us that we’ll still be accruing pay over the course of the shut down, but what good is that? Maybe you can call Wells Fargo and let them know I’ll be paying our mortgage in “promises.” While you’re at it, please let DFAS know they’ll be getting a check for about 331 “promises.” Oh, and can you make sure the local gas stations have magic “promise” machines that will let us fill up our car with gas since my husband still has to go to work? I promise I’ll pay.

If you want to try and defund the Affordable Care Act and pass the Full Faith and Credit Act, you should try to pass those bills head on (or, really, give up on the ACA – 40 times? Really?). Your military members aren’t political pawns to be used to blackmail folks on the other side of the aisle. I seem to remember going through something similar last year, and it’s starting to look like this waiting game is not an accident. You are purposefully waiting for time to run out so that you can play last minute games. It’s getting old, gentlemen.

I’ll finish by saying this: if you mess with our finances, I’ll rally the troops (both literally and figuratively) to make sure that responsible representatives are sent to Washington, DC – officials who know that it’s wrong to say “God bless the troops” while simultaneously holding them hostage for political gain. If this is not fixed, I will personally see to it that you will never serve as elected officials in the state of Florida again.


Stephanie Brown
Proud Air Force Wife

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