If you couldn’t laugh, you’d cry.
America is in the midst of a financial crisis. No, not that one: The federal government is due to shut down at 12:01 a.m. on Oct. 1 if Congress doesn’t pass a bill to raise the debt ceiling by midnight on Sept. 30, and Senate lawmakers can’t seem to agree on a solution. It’s a pretty dire situation, as millions of people across the country may lose out on critical safety-net benefits if federal financing lapses — but that doesn’t mean Twitter isn’t having field day in the best way possible. These memes about a 2021 government shutdown will make you chuckle so hard, you’ll forget all about the fact that your welfare is in the hands of bickering politicians.
Across the country, millions of Americans are still struggling to stay afloat amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. If lawmakers don’t pass legislation to continue funding the federal government, key safety net programs — such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) aka food stamps, social security, hurricane relief, and more — will suffer financial lapses. And while thousands of federals employees face potential furloughs, Congress can still collect their full paychecks amid the shutdown.
Republicans and Democrats remain at odds during this do-or-die moment. While the Democrat-controlled House passed a bill on Sept. 21 that would temporarily fund the government through December by raising the debt ceiling, Senate Republicans blocked the legislation on Sept. 27 with a simple majority vote. While raising the debt ceiling is normally a bipartisan issue, according to The Washington Post, this year Republicans have taken umbrage with its connection to Democratic efforts to pass President Joe Biden’s infrastructure agenda. Unusually, Republicans have taken the stance that Democrats alone should raise the debt ceiling, despite the fact that the debt ceiling increase pays for previous spending under prior administrations. Should lawmakers not agree on a solution, the government is expected to run out of money on Oct. 18, as well as default on its loans.
The irony certainly isn’t lost on Twitter, as people all over the internet are chiming in to roast Congress’ screwed up priorities.
Now, lawmakers have less than a day to agree on a solution, while millions of Americans across the country are still straining to stay out of poverty. Any proposed legislation will need support from all 100 senators to move through Congress — and to steer the country away from a financial crisis. But while it’s still unclear whether the Senate will pass a bill in time, one thing is certain: As always, the Twitter memes are impeccable.