Essential? Boehner’s office orders exclusive gyms for Congress members to stay open during #GOPshutdown


can we talk

John Boehner, you and the rest of us "need to have a conversation."

The GOP shutdown has denied fallen soldiers survivor's benefits.

The GOP shutdown has disrupted Head Start.

The GOP shutdown has halted loans to small businesses.

The GOP shutdown has furloughed thousands and thousands of government workers.

The GOP shutdown has denied cancer patients clinical trial treatment.

Via Think Progress, here's what the GOP shutdown kept open, because apparently this was deemed "essential":

[E]xclusive gyms available only to members of Congress have remained open throughout the shutdown.

A House aide confirmed to ThinkProgress that the House member’s gym is open. The House gym features a swimming pool, basketball courts, paddleball courts, a sauna, a steam room and flat screen TVs. While towel service is unavailable, taxpayers remain on the hook for cleaning and maintenance, which has been performed daily throughout the shutdown. There are also costs associated with the power required to heat the pools and keep the lights on.

According to the aide, the decision to keep the gym open — even while other critical government services were shelved — came directly from Speaker Boehner’s office. Meanwhile, the staff gym available to Congressional staff has been closed.

Yes, we most certainly "need to have a conversation."

But, whew! At least Paul Ryan's Very Important Routine won't be disrupted:

Via Gregg Segal for TIMEVia Gregg Segal for TIME

More at the link.

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