Federal workers are going on strike, not showing up for work, quitting to find new jobs, filing for unemployment, and are now filing lawsuits against Donald Trump and members of his administration. The fact that they are suing Trump himself proves that this is Trump’s shutdown and that things are spiraling out of control.
Two federal government employees that work for the Department of Justice, and three other federal employees that work for the Departments of Transportation, Agriculture and Homeland Security, filed a lawsuit late Wednesday in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia against Trump, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker and Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue.
The lawsuit’s complaint argues that these worker’s constitutional rights are being violated because their departments are both requiring them to work through the shutdown without pay, and are banning them from finding a temporary job to hold them over until the shutdown ends.
Because the departments are effectively forcing them to work without pay, the lawsuit says that the plaintiff’s 13th Amendment rights protecting them from slavery and involuntary servitude are being violated. The suit also argues that the employee’s Fifth Amendment rights that no person shall “be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law,” are also being violated, though that argument might be more of a stretch.
The plaintiffs are asking the court to stop the government from requiring employees to report for work without pay during the shutdown and to not ban them from working elsewhere during the shutdown. 800,000 federal workers have been furloughed or forced to work without pay due to the shutdown.
This lawsuit is more evidence of Trump’s lies because he has claimed that federal workers back the shutdown. This is also simply a disaster that will cost our government even more money due to the shutdown. The plaintiffs can seek damages and like 99% of lawsuits, this will drag out for years, regardless of when the shutdown finally ends.
Expect more suits to follow, as more than 4,700 Federal employees have filed for unemployment after missing their first paychecks today. “It seems like it’s going to go on forever,” a tax examiner for the IRS who filed for unemployment, told CNBC. “I need to eat.”
So many employees are being forced to quit, that Miami International Airport plans to close one of its main terminals over the weekend because TSA screeners are calling in sick at double the normal rate for Miami. People are being pushed to the edge and they are going to do whatever they can to survive.