A BRIEF LOOK AT THE GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN Essay

Submitted By galaxy1992
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A BRIEF LOOK AT THE GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN

On September 30, 3013 the Congress rejects and returns the spending bills. The House of Representatives calls for negotiation between the Republicans and Democrats. After several hours of critical debate, the two parties fails to reach an agreement on the spending budget for the fiscal year 2014. For the first time in 17 years, the United State Federal Government enters a shutdown for 16 days, from October 1 to 16. This is the third longest shutdown in the U.S history. The shutdown is the dark clouds that covers the economy and life of American people. All families and businesses across the country are suffered. It inflicts a significant damage to the U.S economy in particular and the world economy in general.
In accordance to the legislation from 19th century, each provision of the spending bill is needed to be passed by the Congress. The Government cannot spend a dime without this bill. Without the fund, the Government has no other choice but to shut down. In the video message addressing troops and Defense Department, President Barrack Obama expresses his frustration and disappointment about government closing “Unfortunately, Congress has not fulfilled its responsibility. It has failed to pass a budget and, as a result, much of our government must now shut down until Congress funds it again." [1] The level of Government debt ceiling has reached $16,700 billion. [2] The Obama administration has been trying its best to convince the Congress to raise the debt ceiling again. However, the Republicans oppose this action, arguing that the appropriate solution is to cut government spending, starting first with Obamacare. The Democrats and Republicans disagree on the health insurance funding plan for millions of Americans who do not have insurance. The representatives of Republicans in the House determine to defend their opinion that the Obamacare plan proposed in 2009 should be canceled. They refuse to sign the bill that supports it. On the other hand, the Democrats in Senate offer a determined opposition and want Obamacare to be included in the bill. President Obama also fully supports this health insurance plan. This is the main obstacle that causes the disagreement on spending bill. The Congress fails to pass an appropriation bill to fund the Government before the new fiscal year beginning October 1, which makes the funding gap occur.
As the result of the shutdown, 800,000 federal workers are furloughed indefinitely and another 1.3 million essential government employees still have to carry on their work without knowing when they will get paid. [3] Federal agencies including the Pentagon and the representative of the U.S embassy abroad are closed. Travel and tourism are disrupted due to the closure of national parks and museums. Local economies are also negatively affected. The number of unemployment is estimated around 13 million but only 1.7 million people are eligible to continue receiving unemployment benefits. Many critical programs and services that relate to millions of people’s lives are halted by the shutdown. The National Institutes of Health cannot admit new patients and answer hotline calls about medical questions. All the federal loans to small businesses, families and home mortgage must be put on hold. Tax refunds will not be issued until normal government operation resumes. [4]
However, excepted federal workers who operate critical government functions related to public safety, national security and program written into permanent law still stay open. Other independent funding agencies including U.S Postal Services and Federal Reserve are not affected. Social security payments and food stamps continue to be issued. Essential activities such as traffic control, border patrol, medical care emergency, power grid and emergency and disaster assistance are operating as usual. Visas and passports applications will also continue to be processed during the shutdown since…