Washington, DC, USA (October 1, 2013) — The American Alliance of Museums (AAM) today released the following statement from its President, Fred W. Bell:
“The failure of Congress to pass a budget—or even a stopgap measure to temporarily keep the government operating—reflects a stunning abandonment of the most fundamental responsibilities of our Congressional leaders. The fact that our national parks and many of our museums will be closing their doors to the public today, and that their staffs will begin indefinite furloughs, is a disgraceful by-product of the dysfunction that has swept the halls of Congress. Americans are justifiably outraged.
“I call on our elected leaders to put aside their partisan differences and political agendas and immediately pass a bill to fund the government at current levels while they continue to work on a long term solution to the budget impasse. It is imperative that members of Congress from both parties, across the political spectrum, work to achieve a bipartisan, common-sense budget that reflects—and respects—our nation’s values and priorities.
“I also call on our citizens to renew their civic responsibility to make their voices heard and to hold their elected officials accountable for their disgraceful dereliction of duty in allowing the government to shut down.