Recently, there has been a lot of talk about 'essential' vs. 'non-essential' government employees. With the federal government shutdown, all 'non-essential' employees have been placed on furlough. But, why do we have 'non-essential' government employees to begin with?
From The Washington Examiner:
"Essential" and "non-essential" more precisely capture the essence of the process for how officials decide which government workers must report to work during a shutdown because America cannot do without their services. And who can be spared.
Which brings us to Government Executive magazine and its truly staggering chart of essentials and non-essentials by major federal departments and agencies, according to those same departments and agencies.
Fully 95 percent of the Environmental Protection Agency's employees are non-essential. It's 96 percent at the Department of Housing and Urban Development, 95 percent at the Department of Education, and 90 percent at the Department of the Treasury. The overall average for the government is 43 percent.
If these career civil service employees aren't doing essential work in government, why are the American people spending more than $100 billion annually to pay them? That's precisely the kind of question that a government with a $17 trillion national debt literally cannot afford not to ask.