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Post Shutdown, Tourists Are Back In Line To See Liberty Bell

JEFF BRADY, BYLINE: I'm Jeff Brady, and in downtown Philadelphia at Independence National Historical Park, tourists are lining up outside the Liberty Bell again.

CHARLES CUMMINGS: My name's Charles Cummings. This is my wife, Marilyn. We're from Little Rock, Ark.

BRADY: Seeing the building where the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were debated and signed has Cummings thinking: What if today's politicians were around when the country was being formed?

CUMMINGS: We could never pull this off. We don't get along well enough. We don't talk. We don't communicate. We could never pull this off today if independence had to happen today in our environment.

BRADY: Nearby, Leslie Sworsky, from Minnesota, is happy the National Park Service staff are back working again, just in time for a vacation she started planning a year ago. Sworsky is a Democrat, and says she's also happy President Obama didn't give in to Tea Party Republicans who wanted to stop the Affordable Care Act.

LESLIE SWORSKY: Maybe this faction of the Republican Party will come to see that, you know, they can't come there to stop things. They have to come there to make good decisions and to make things happen, rather than to stop things from happening. That's what I would like to see.

BRADY: Also in line to see the Liberty Bell: Cynthia Allison from Madison, Ala. She's not affiliated with a political party, but says she's a conservative and disappointed that after the partial shutdown, nothing has really changed.

CYNTHIA ALLISON: And it's not going to result in having fixed anything.

BRADY: Allison says she's not looking forward to a possible debt ceiling debate again early next year, and she's simply disgusted with Washington.

ALLISON: If they had to work in a business world the way the rest of us work in a business world, they would have been fired a long time ago.

BRADY: Her husband, Glen Allison, agrees and says if midterm elections scheduled for next year were happening today, he wouldn't vote for any incumbents.

Jeff Brady, NPR News, Philadelphia. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Jeff Brady is a National Desk Correspondent based in Philadelphia, where he covers energy issues and climate change. Brady helped establish NPR's environment and energy collaborative which brings together NPR and Member station reporters from across the country to cover the big stories involving the natural world.