The Ottumwa Courier


Shutdown Politics

FILE - In this Nov. 7, 2006 file photo, Rep. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho speaks in Boise, Idaho. The government shutdown could last for many days or even weeks, congressional insiders say, because politically safe members in both parties feel little pressure to compromise. Recent political trends -- including heavily gerrymandered districts that make many House Democrats and Republicans virtual shoo-ins for re-election -- insulate lawmakers from events and emotions beyond their home regions. Gerrymandering has existed for decades. But election results and lawmakers' voting patterns show that the House is more sharply divided along party lines than at almost any point in modern times. (AP Photo/Matt Cilley, File)

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