Clashes outside the White House – as debt decision day looms

Barricades outside the White House on Sunday
Barricades outside the White House on Sunday

ANGRY crowds in Washington DC have clashed with riot police in front of the White House over the current government shutdown.

A number of rallies took place on Sunday, which began at the World War II Memorial and ended at the White House gates.

Frustrated with the continued shutdown and angry at the closure of Washington memorials, demonstrators tore down the barricades blocking the World War II memorial on the National Mall and took them to the White House.

Some of the protesters were carrying signs demanding that President Barack Obama be impeached.

Obama was reportedly in the White House when the demonstrators arrived.

Other demonstrators questioned the whole political system of their country.

One protester said: ‘You know what, it’s Republicans and Democrats, it’s not just a one party deal, okay?

‘It’s the establishment. It’s the elected officials are no longer representing the people.

‘It doesn’t matter if you’re a Democrat or Republican, you have to look at this as an American and see that they aren’t looking out for you.’

Another protester said: ‘All these people are down here because things are broken. I’m tired of getting kicked around, I’ve lost money on this.’

A large number of police forces moved demonstrators away from the White House fence.

Another protest rally was held simultaneously outside the US Capitol building.

Demonstrators were calling for an end to the government shutdown, saying they need to get back to work.

Republicans and Democrats in the US remain at a deadlock as the shutdown has now entered its third week, meaning that over 700,000 government workers are still on unpaid leave.

However, an immeasurably more acute crisis draws ever closer with the government deadline to raise its debt ceiling only two days away on Thursday October 17.

Failure to raise the debt ceiling, currently at $16.7tn, will result in an almost immediate default, sending banks and entire economies crashing down across the world.

The head of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, has warned that a US default will tip the world into recession.

In a US TV interview she said: ‘If there is that degree of disruption, that lack of certainty, that lack of trust in the US signature, it would mean massive disruption the world over and we would be at risk of tipping yet again into recession.’