Shutdown’s ripple effects on security, local economy

WASHINGTON – The federal government shutdown is more than a pocketbook issue – it could have consequences for national security.

“There are a significant number of national security issues impacted,” says Mario Mancuso, former Pentagon official, and partner at the Fried Frank law firm.

While military personnel remain on duty worldwide, that’s not true for all those who work in the nation’s intelligence agencies.

“About 70% of the civilian intel work force is off-duty,” Mancuso says.

He believes the impact on national security could be harmful in the long run, especially if some of the government’s best and brightest abandon government ranks for the private sector.

Mancuso also says some work aimed at challenges that may be over the horizon is going undone.

The shutdown is also likely to have a spillover effect on private business.

“Metro has said that volume on their trains and buses is down about 20 percent; that, of course translates into fewer people going downtown eating at restaurants,” says Paul Brandus, White House reporter for West Wing Reports.

“Lockheed Martin employs 5,000 people in Montgomery County,” Brandus says. The defense contractor has announced plans to furlough 3,000 individuals nationwide.

Economists have projected that the shutdown could have a $200 million-per-day impact on the area.

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