Government employees sent home because of the shutdown say they want to go back to work, but admit there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight. A few dozen protesters gathered outside a mostly empty Chicago Social Security Administration Office, blaming Republicans in the House of Representatives for the crisis, going as far as labeling them “hostage takers.”
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“That anger comes from the sheer callousness and the selfishness of being used as a pawn in a drama that has nothing to do with you,” said Gail Moran, a former government employee who now volunteers for Organizing for Action Illinois. Around 800,000 federal workers were sent home without pay on Tuesday, after Congress failed to pass a budget or a continuing resolution to fund the government. Moran warned that with neither Democrats nor Republicans in Congress appearing willing to compromise, the current standoff could last longer than the 1995-96 shutdown.