Standing across the street form the Bucks County Veterans Center in Bristol, Strouse called on Fitzpatrick to support a clean bill that would pass a continuing resolution to fully fund the federal government for the next fiscal year.
"It's time to stop playing games," said Strouse. "The Congressional Republicans have caved into the Tea Party, and if they use the same politics with the debt ceiling, the consequences will be felt immediately."
Since the federal shutdown at midnight on Oct. 1, Fitzpatrick has voted for several bills that would continue funding for certain departments and services affected by the shutdown, including national parks and museums, the veterans administration, payment of reservists and the National Institutes of Health.
"While I will continue to work with members of both parties to find a reasonable solution to end this shutdown for good, I urge the Senate and President to act in good faith and pass these vital spending bills in the mean time," Fitzpatrick said in a statement.
Fitzpatrick (PA-8) announced his support for a plan that would call on leaders of both parties to agree to fund the government at sequester levels for six months and repeal the medical device tax that is part of the Affordable Care Act.
“I was sent to Washington to solve problems and make government work, not shut it down. It’s us in the 'radical middle' who are finding solutions to get the government running -that means even on the tough issues it is important to work with members of both parties,” said Fitzpatrick. “This plan is a reasonable compromise that moves our nation forward by addressing concerns about the President’s healthcare law.”
Strouse, a former Army Ranger and CIA officer, said that the bills are piecemeal solutions and that veterans in particular should not be used as leverage. He highlighted the work the Veterans Benefits Administration has done to attack the 12-month backlog of claims submitted by veteran soldiers. The continued shutdown threatens to erase the office's efforts to process the paperwork, Strouse said.The Democratic primary for the 8th Congressional District is May 20, 2014. Strouse will compete for votes with Plumstead Township's Shaughnessy Naughton, with the winner taking on Fitzpatrick in the run-up to Election Day on Nov. 4, 2014.