The sequester that was signed into law last week has kicked in with many budget cuts across the board. One of the ways that federal agencies have adjusted is by forced furloughs for their workers. The executive branch has not been spared budget cuts in the sequester, as President Barack Obama was told not to report to work yesterday.
With Obama out of the Oval Office for the day, his responsibilities were largely performed by a patchwork team of interns and other low level staffers. To start the day, intern George Tavers, a political science senior from Georgetown University, reviewed the daily security briefing and ordered a drone attack on a suspected terrorist believed to be living in a rural village in Pakistan.
Later in the afternoon intern Denise Gibbons called the Vice-President of Venezuela to express hope that the United States could form a strong, cooperative relationship with the new leadership in light of Hugo Chavez’s recent death.
The hectic day ended for the interns at a pro-Israel dinner sponsored by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. At the dinner, intern Justin Fentman assured the crowd that President Obama is fully supportive of Israel and for finding a peaceful solution to the problems facing the Middle East.
With no work for the day and now facing a 20% pay cut until the current financial crisis can be resolved, President Obama spent the day relaxing with some video games, tending to chores around the house, and using coupons at Shop Rite to find ways for his family to save some money.
“It stinks. Aside from less income at a time that the economy is still fragile, I just know that when I go in tomorrow I’m going to waste the first half of my day cleaning up any mistakes the interns made” Obama said.
No solution appears to be in sight any time soon, as the furlough has cut down Congress’ working days to two per month.