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Former DHS secretary: Shutdown leading to ‘anger and resentment’ among federal workers

Greg Nash

Former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said Sunday that the ongoing partial government shutdown has negatively affected the country’s security, and likely led to “anger and resentment” among government employees.

Johnson, who led the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) from 2013-2017, warned on CBS’s “Face the Nation” of looming repercussions if the shutdown continues. DHS employees are among those who have not been paid as the partial shutdown stretches into its fourth week.

“The people we depend upon to find explosives in luggage, to find weapons in luggage, the people we depend upon to secure our borders, to look for contraband at courts, to look for narcotics at courts are the people under great stress right now because of this shutdown,” Johnson said.{mosads}

“And it must be leading — I think I know this work force — it must be leading to all kinds of uncertainty, stress and anxiety and, frankly, anger and resentment,” he continued.

Johnson predicted that if the shutdown is not resolved soon, “we’re going to start seeing longer and longer lines at airports.” Multiple reports have indicated that Transportation Security Administration workers have called in sick, protested and threatened to quit amid a lapse in their pay.

Roughly 25 percent of the federal government has been shuttered for 23 days and counting amid an impasse between President Trump and congressional Democrats over his demand for more than $5 billion in funding for a wall along the southern border.

The Democratic-led House last week passed a series of stand-alone spending measures to provide funding for the Departments of Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, Interior and other agencies. The bills are unlikely to be taken up in the Senate.

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