"It's scaring the bejesus out of everyone, now, isn't it?" asked John Boehner.
photo credit: Just Us 3
PEAKING AT a press conference Monday to mark the start of the second week of the government shutdown, House Speaker John Boehner began his remarks by shouting "Boo!!" into the bank of microphones at the podium.
Reporters, initially startled, were then informed by the Speaker that the shutdown and threats of not raising the debt ceiling "are nothing but a very successful Halloween trick."
Boehner then winked and said, "It's scaring the bejesus out of everyone, now, isn't it?"
The Speaker said he was "fibbing just a little bit" in his remarks a few days ago when he said the shutdown was "not a game."
"It is a game, as anyone with half a brain and a little Halloween spirit can clearly see," explained Mr. Boehner. "Just a fun, harmless game in which we furlough hundreds of thousands of workers and scare everyone half to death that we're never going to raise the debt ceiling. Happy Halloween, everyone!"
Admitting that "Halloween is one of my very favorite holidays," Boehner said he wanted to celebrate "all month long" by first shutting down the government "and then getting perilously close to defaulting on our debt as a nation on October 17. Oooooh, scary!!!" he said, chuckling to himself.
Boehner refused to say how much longer the government shutdown, or as he referred to it, "the Halloween merriment" would continue, or how close he would allow the United States to get to defaulting on its obligations and plunging the world's economies into crisis.
"That's for me to know and you to find out, my little ghosts and goblins!" he said, howling like a wolf.
In the mean time, the Speaker promised "lots of fun prizes" to win at other games, such as a costume contest, a treasure hunt, and bobbing for apples, all of which will be held in now-empty federal office buildings "where we'll have the place to ourselves," the Speaker explained. "I can't wait!"
Mr. Boehner then stepped down from the podium and handed out Halloween candy to reporters from a plastic pumpkin before waving goodbye to the press corps.
The Speaker left without replying to the question as to whether his orange-tinted skin was part of the Halloween fun.
© 10.8.13 Kate Heidel