The federal government is shut down and that has caused some real pain for some Americans. For instance Lake Mead residents have been kept from their homes, private businesses have been shutdown, veterans have had access to their memorials blocked, tourists have been blocked from even viewing Mt. Rushmore from afar, and veterans are having their benefits threatened.
How has Congressman Bruce Braley (D-IA) been impacted? He has to do his own laundry if he wants a towel in the House gym.
He registered his complaint on a segment of the Bill Press Show:
In the full segment he also complained about the “mad dash” of some Congressman to run back to their districts. Really? Members of Congress should be spending more time with their constituents. He bemoans the fact that members of Congress don’t have the time they used to have to get to know one another. I don’t deny that is important, but getting to know your constituents is even more important.
So if Congressman Braley is elected to the U.S. Senate I guess we shouldn’t expect him to be back in Iowa much, but we will know that the Senate gym will have full towel service.
I also find it appalling that he’s complaining about having to spend $260 a year to use the House gym. That’s $21.66 per month which is actually less than if you or I got a membership at say SnapFitness or Anytime Fitness. Certainly less than a membership at a local YMCA (unless you get a great scholarship), and it is certainly less than many other full service gyms.
This guy is simply out-of-touch with average Iowans.
Update: In case you were wondering what some of the amenities provided by the House Gym are, here you go. It seems that the House gym offers standard cardio and weight machines, plus a [heated] swimming pool, basketball courts, and paddleball courts. There’s also a sauna and a steam room.
But that blasted towel service!
2nd Update: David Young, a Republican candidate for Iowa’s open U.S. Senate seat, released a statement this afternoon.
It’s unfortunate that Congressman Braley is more concerned with the towel service at the Members Only gym than he is getting government back to work for Iowa taxpayers. If elected to the U.S. Senate, I will bring my own towel to my gym, and I will do everything I can to make sure the federal government passes on time budgets, gets our fiscal house in order, and averts government shutdowns. This is the Iowa taxpayer’s dollar and they deserve a government that works for them.
3rd Update: Other candidates weigh in.
This morning Congressman Bruce Braley expressed the severe difficulties he is experiencing firsthand as a result of the ongoing federal government shutdown. In this case, the congressman is having to use of the members-only, taxpayer-subsidized House gym despite no towel service being available while referencing the possibility of having to do his own laundry as well.
This afternoon the Joni Ernst for US Senate campaign sent Congressman Braley a care package that contained fresh towels and laundry detergent along with a note containing the following language: "Congressman Braley, Enjoy these fresh towels. Also, since Joni does her own laundry and you clearly do not, here is some detergent to help you get through these tough times. Regards, The Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate Campaign."
All humor aside, at a time when even our brave military veterans are not able to receive much-needed benefits, it is disturbing that Braley’s focus is on towels and laundry service. His misguided priorities show that he is more about Washington and less about proven Iowa values – Bruce Braley simply has no business representing Iowa in the United States Senate.
As a mother, soldier and a conservative, Joni Ernst stands ready to bring proven Iowa values to Washington to fix the mess that President Obama and Bruce Braley have created.
Matt Whitaker weighed in:
Congressman Bruce Braley is showing just how out of touch he is with the needs of Iowans. Our government has been shut down for the last week while our policy-makers wrestle with important matters like Obamacare and funding levels.
Meanwhile, Congressman Braley is concerned about the lack of towels in the House gym.
This is exactly what is wrong with Washington. We need someone who can help clean up the rampant dysfunction and corruption in Washington D.C. I’ve done that as a U.S. Attorney and I promise to do that as Iowa’s next Senator.
And I’ll bring my own towels.
Sam Clovis weighed in:
Towel service? Really? How out of touch with the people of Iowa can one person be? He sits at the center of the shutdown storm and is a member of a caucus that refuses to engage on responsible spending, debt reduction, deficit reduction, or any other form of fiscal policy that might lead to easing uncertainty in the American people.