What is a Government Shutdown? What Will Happen?

Construction cones stand along the sidewalk at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 19, 2018. (AP /Susan Walsh)

David Childs, Ph.D.
Northern Kentucky University

When there is a lot of bi-partisan discord between the executive and legislative branches surrounding passing end of year spending legislation we often begin to hear about the possibility of a government shutdown. It is important that American citizens understand what this means. What makes a democracy successful is when citizens understand their rights and the various processes that take place in the government as well as their civic duties. An important component in operating a well functioning democracy is an educated citizenry.

When Does a Government Shutdown Occur?
A government shutdown takes place in the United States when nonessential offices of the government close due to a lack of approval on the federal budget for the upcoming fiscal year. More specifically, when congress fails to pass legislation or the President does not sign an appropriations bill that would fund certain federal government operations and agencies a shutdown occurs. Sometimes the case is that the opposing party in Congress disagrees with the president and refuses to pass the spending legislation. For example, republican senators may refuse to vote for certain spending legislation that a democratic president wants to pass, this would trigger a government shutdown. NOTE: An appropriations bill is legislation in the United States Congress to appropriate federal funds to specific federal government departments, agencies and programs. The money provides funding for operations, personnel, equipment and activities.  

If Congress passes all of the spending bills connected to the federal budget, a shutdown can be circumvented. However, if they cannot come to an agreement a government shutdown will occur. A shutdown will close many of the federally funded operations, stopping the work for federal employees that are deemed non-essential. Some non-essential organizations can stay open for a short amount of time running on cash reserves. However, when the reserve funds runs out the organizations close. This sort of stalemate continues until an agreement is reached within Congress or with the President and a budget bill is passed. In the recent shutdown of late fall 2018, President Donald Trump asked for federal funding to build a wall along the Mexican border, but Congress has not been able to pass legislation to support it, this triggered a government shutdown.

Government Shutdowns Have Happened Before
A shutdown is not new to the federal government, but it’s unusual for them to happen when one party controls the White House and Congress; this is the case for the Trump administration. In fact, because of sharp disagreements between both parties on spending, a shutdown has happened three times during his nearly two years in office. The recent shutdown has caused federal employees to be furloughed. This has not happened since 1974.

What are the Effects of a Government Shutdown?
Government shutdowns can affect many of the everyday government processing functions, including recruitment of law enforcement officers and the processing of social security cards and passport applications. Also, some functions of banks are affected by the shutdown, even though they are not government-controlled. Financial institutions cannot access information needed such as income tax records which may impact their ability to process new small business loan applications. Another possible affect might be that, payments from government sources to recipients of veterans’ benefits or unemployment insurance may be temporarily put on hold. In the fall 2018 shutdown triggered by the Trump administration more than 380,000 federal workers have been put on furlough and another 420,000 employees were forced to work without pay.

There can also be indirect effects of a government shutdown. It could impact other sectors of society besides the government, such as the business sector. In the fall 2018 shutdown, more than 380,000 federal workers have been put on furlough and another 420,000 employees were forced to work without pay. When federal workers are on furlough and as a result not spending, this could cause a loss of revenue within the businesses they normally would have patronized. The overall cost and impact on the economy as a result of a furlough can be devastating. Some shutdowns in the past have cost the economy as much as $20 billion, however some may not be as costly. Offices that do not receive funding from Congress can continue operating during a shutdown such as the Federal Reserve, the Post Office, active prison guards, police and firefighters, border patrol agents, air traffic control and active military.

The average US citizen may not understand the ends and outs of a government shutdown; many people may not realize what it means at all. The social studies classroom is a great way to educate students on this aspect of the American government. Below some teacher resources are provided to help social studies teachers create a curriculum highlighting key aspects of government shutdowns.

Teacher Resources/ Lesson Plans


  • National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS)- Standard 6 Power, Authority and Governance: Social studies programs should include experiences that provide for the study of how people create, interact with, and change structures of power, authority, and governance.”
  • High School Ohio Social Studies Standards: American Government Theme: Students examine the Founding Documents which form the basis for the United States of America and how the American people govern themselves at national, state and local levels of government is the basis for this course. Students may also impact issues addressed by governments through service learning and senior projects.
  • Eighth Grade Standard ROLES AND SYSTEMS OF GOVERNMENT Content Statements: 22. The U.S. Constitution established a federal republic, providing a framework for a national government with elected representatives, separation of powers, and checks and balances. 23. The U.S. Constitution protects citizens’ rights by limiting the powers of government.

    Questions for discussion:
  • What ways can a government shutdown affect the average person?
  • What persons or citizens might be affected most by the government shutdown?
  • Should Congress be held accountable for the government shutdown?

Teacher Resources/Sample Lessons

Teaching Toolkit: 9 Resources for Discussing the Government Shutdown

2013 Government Shutdown – Database of K-12 Resources

Five Ways to Teach the Shutdown

Government Shutdown: A Teacher’s Guide


Need-to-Know: Government Shutdown!


The Government Shutdown and K-12 Education: Your Guide



Government Shutdowns Are Rare When One Party Controls White House, Congress. President Trump is On His Third

Government Shutdowns in the United States


In Pictures: The Latest Government Shutdown


Here is Every Previous Government Shutdown, Why They Happened and how They Ended


Schumer Demands Trump ‘Abandon the Wall’ as DC Faces Shutdown Stalemate.

Government Shutdown 2018


What Happens During a Government Shutdown? 7 Things You Should Know


Why the Government Shutdown Actually Costs Money?


The government shutdown is here. How does it affect you?


Government Shutdown 2018 and 2013 Explained




  1. This is a very interesting article to me because I don’t know much about what is happening with it, I never knew that the government could shut down because they don’t approve something. I think it is not okay to shut down the government for the many reasons given in the article, it’s just crazy. In the article, it said 420,000 employees were forced to work without pay and that is nonsense! We shouldn’t be putting people out of pay over a disagreement. 

  2. A government shutdown that I had heard of but I guess never really understood. This article was very eye opening to me to learn the details of what is actually happening in our country. Though Trump is not the first to cause a government shutdown it does seem that it has never been for such an outlandish reason. I feel that this government shutdown is putting us in a vulnerable state.

  3. While government shutdowns have happened before, this one seems specifically detrimental due to the sheer number of federal employees not being paid, or being forced to work without pay. If 420,000 government officials were forced to work without pay in any other country, we would call the government oppressive, and their unpaid labour indentured servitude. It is worth regarding the uniqueness of this shut down due to one its length but two, that congress and the executive branch are from the same party and therefor should be working towards the same goals. This government shutdown between a single party shows the strive and division in the republican party, but also within the nation as a whole.

  4. It is very concerning to me as an American that the government can shut down government agencies all because of a dispute between one another. A shut down often makes me think about those who aren’t being paid. I think about people who work very hard to be barely able to put food on the table and their government telling them to hold on for money to feed their families, all while forcing them to continue working. To me I think of how the government would treat us if we took money from them, they would make us pay interest. I think another reason I get frustrated about this topic is that a government shutdown doesn’t directly affect any of the people making the decision they still get to go home to a warm meal and well-fed children. Maybe if they knew what they were doing to other people and understood what it felt like to be forced to work without payment not knowing when pay will return maybe they would be more conscious to call for a shutdown.

  5. I found this article very informative. I know many people that are working for free right now or not working at all, but I never fully understood why. Now I understand the basics of government shutdowns and how it impacts not only government employees, but society as a whole. I also found it interesting on how costly the shutdowns are. If the shutdown occurred due to a funding issue, shutting down the government seems kind of counterproductive.

  6. This is a very important time in history and it is very cool, I guess, that we get to live during this time. I have heard several news stories about families being affected by the shutdown, they aren’t getting paid therefore they have no money to get food or pay their mortgage. I believe the things most affected by the shutdown is things like parks and museums. Also, the FDA has slowed down on their routine food inspections.

  7. I never fully understood what a government shutdown meant, why it happened, it who it really affects. As a military veteran’s dependent I know understand that my family is directly affected when I had no idea. My father gets veteran benefits that are now being affected because of the shutdown. It was also shocking to hear that this is shutdown number three for Trump in his short 2 years of office. This article was very informative and helpful in understanding what our country is going through.

  8. Don’t get me wrong I have heard many times where the government has been shutdown but I never knew exactly what that mean or what has to happen for it to be shutdown and for so long over not approving something. When I was reading something it talked about how so many thousands of people were out of a job or still had to go into work but were not getting a paycheck. The legislature needs to come together and agree so that the government can re-open and get those people back to work with a steady paycheck.

  9. I was not aware that the government shutdown had forced 420,000 workers to work without pay. I was aware of the shutdown, and have heard how it does affect families and those receiving government assistance. I think it is awful to have to worry about how people are going to feed their families. I found this article to be very informative to get a more understanding on how everyone is being affected.

  10. I enjoyed all of the information that was in this article. I knew that the government could shut down, but it was nice to get the information in better detail. I think that the government being about to shut down because they all don’t agree on something is very concerning. I also enjoyed the article because I did not know that government shut downs could cost so much money. I don’t think that the government should be able to shut down over a disagreement and cause people to not get their pay checks.

  11. To be completely honest, I’m not very educated on things that happen within the Government. When I heard about the Government Shutdown, I didn’t really understand what that meant. My dad explained a lot of it to me when it first shutdown. We just recently went out of town, and he explained that everyone working in the airport wasn’t getting paid. It was so crazy to think about all of the people that were/are continuing to work with no pay.

  12. I really enjoyed this article! Before I read it, I was not so sure why the governemnt actually shuts down. I learned that the cause of this issue is due to the approval on the federal budget not present. The shut down has caused many employees to be laid off, which I have also learned has not happened since 1974.

  13. I was always wondering why the government could shutdown and leave many people without pay. I know it affects anyone who is currently working for or within the government system but I wonder how long this could hold until protest start happening. I know a lot of people are beginning to quit or not show up for work until pay has returned and I do not disagree with them. This article is very insightful and has provided me with the information I need to understand the shutdown completely.

  14. I personally never gave much thought into what the shut down effected. I do not work a government job so I never thought of the government withholding my pay check. I am the daughter of a veteran, so my father is directly effected. When the government is shut down he can’t recieve his benefits from the VA hospital. I’m glad I am now able to understand the way the government shut down works.

  15. Being in a government shut down can affect the average person in many ways. One was is that it can affect the income of others. Those that might be affected the most are those that work for the military or through the government. Congress should be held accountable for government shut downs because this affects more than just them, this can affect the whole nation.

  16. As someone who is the wife to an active duty member serving in the military, it is very important for military personnel and their families to have a complete understanding of what a government shutdown consists of. The current shutdown has not yet affected our family personally, but we do have colleagues and others who have been affected depending on their job title and status in the military. This article will be something that I will personally be able to reference to whenever a new spouse or family member has questions regarding the shutdown. It actually does not shock me that there have been three shutdowns, because for each one my husband is briefed over and over again as to what is expected and that they have to continue working even if that means it affects us negatively.

  17. It’s interesting to go more in depth about the government shutdown as it’s something going on around us right now. It was interesting to me the fact that its unusual for it to happen when the same party is running the house and Congress, which I feel raises a lot more questions then a typical shut down and it’s a little more concerning. I didn’t realize how many people are being affected by the government shutdown. It’s concerning that 380,000 are being put on furlough, but the government won’t even come to a conclusion for those people. Not even to mention the average person going without WIC or etc. The think the people going without their WIC, or food stamps are being the most affect by the shut down. I believe congress should be accountable. When I have a fight or an issue with someone we can talk and work it out, so why can’t the government come to a conclusion?

  18. Thank you Dr. Childs for further explaining what a government shut down actually is and what happens during a shut down. Though I understand the frustrating between the opposing party in Congress and the President, I just don’t understand why the people are left to suffer. From watching the news lately as almost a month has set in into the shut down, many federal employees are struggling to make ends meet because they are not receiving their pay. I personally feel that it is wrong in some aspects and the people shouldn’t suffer because of a dispute in the government.

  19. Government shutdowns are infuriating to most people involved in the country. A government can shut down due to inconclusive decision making. This, in my opinion, is the equivalent to a child throwing a tantrum and running to their room to avoid their parents because they aren’t getting what they want. People are continuing to work without pay (e.i. TSA agents in charge of making sure our airports are safe) because the government is struggling to make decisions. The people of our Congress and the President are elected officials that we the people trust to have our country’s best interest at heart. Their well-educated individuals that are capable of continuing to make our country prosper and grow. It’s hard to fathom prosperity coming to a halt due to a government not coming to reasonable conclusions one way or another.

  20. Before I read this article, I was only semi-aware of all that is included in a government shutdown. I didn’t know that government shutdowns can affect businesses and veterans. I am curious what exactly is defined as “nonessential offices of the government”. For example, to one administration, I am sure that parks departments and environmental departments would be high priority, but in another administration, I could see those departments as being viewed nonessential. So I am curious how exactly they are defined as essential or nonessential, and if they are truly nonessential, why do we as tax payers fund them in the first place instead of privatizing them. It was also interesting to me how the shutdown affects even minuscule things, such as passport applications. Over all, this was a very educational article and I learned a lot from it.

  21. Before reading this article, I had a basic understanding of what a government shutdown was and what it entailed, but this only helped further explain to the topic in an organized fashion. Regardless of your political stance, I hope we can all agree that many people become negatively affected by a shutdown (i.e. military personnel and unpaid government employees such as TSA). Within my own life, my fiancé got notified a few days ago that his military training, which had him leaving Feb 1st, would be postponed until further notice. This news became frustrating since we planned our wedding around his 4 month leave, but it really put into perspective how much government shutdowns effect us more personally and directly than we may intially realize. I really enjoyed reading this article and it allowed me to be more educated on the subject.

  22. I think it is ridiculous that the president can shut down the government because he isn’t getting what he wants. All of the peoples lives who are affected greatly from the shut down don’t have a choice but to work without pay and that is not right. In all honesty it baffles my mind that our government can still have shut downs like this.

  23. Prior to reading this article, my biggest concern regarding the government shutdown was the number of employees being forced to work with no pay. I had no concept, however, of how many people this really affects. In addition to not being paid, many of these individuals work very important and difficult jobs that are essential to our safety and therefore employees must continue to work. One example listed in the article is air traffic control, but without them flight would be extremely dangerous. Other jobs that are less important to national safety, such as national park workers, are able to not work during the shutdown, however visitors are harming the state of the parks with no employees to clean. I am interested to see how much longer the shutdown will last and the process of how things (such as the national parks) will return to normal.

  24. I decided to read this specific article because as a future social studies teacher I need to stay informed with events happening in the country. This also means that I need to know what a government shutdown actually means. This article gave me a basic understanding of what a government shutdown is and what it means to government employees, as well as for the rest of the country. I never fully understood what a government shutdown meant, why it happened, it who it really affects. I also found it very interesting with how much is actually cost to have the government shutdown for this long.

  25. This article was very helpful in understanding how a government shutdown occurs. I thought it was just because Republicans and Democrats could not agree on a piece of legislation, and I did not know that it always occurs at the end of a fiscal year. I also find it interesting that a government shutdown affects so many people. I have heard of some restaurants in the Northern Kentucky area that are actually offering discounts and free food to government employees because of the government shutdown. I can’t even imagine how many families are affected by a government shutdown. I think this would be a great way to make a lesson about government shutdowns relevant to middle school students. As a teacher, I can dive into how a government shutdown could affect their own lives. This gives me a lot of great ideas for possible lessons.

  26. Thank you for explaining the government shutdown in this blog post. As someone who is not very interested in the government because I am easily confused by all the terminology, this article gave me a better understanding. This shutdown is going to be a good thing to teach my students about in my future classroom, as (hopefully) this government shutdown will be history.

  27. While we are actually in a government shut down right now I think that some of it is mostly based on media and public attention not actually on the government. I don’t think that this is necessary because many employees are not receiving money that support them and their families. I think that congress is responsible and doing this kind of defeats the point because of all of the money lost while laying many workers off. I think that this should never happen in the first place but if it does the severity should not be this extreme.

  28. It was very eyeopening to see how the events played out for this government shutdown occurred. I think its very important ensure that people understand not only what is going on within context but also without the bias of many more politically based news media. It doesn’t seem like this shutdown will end soon.

  29. This article was very intriguing to me because as a US citizen, I personally had no understanding as to why the government would shut down. I knew the general understanding, but was never able to fully understand why it happened. It hurts to think that because of lack of agreement that there are several people that are working without pay. I personally have a couple of family members that have government jobs that had to return to work on Monday and they will not receive pay for it.

  30. The government shutdown affects too many of the American citizens. The shutdown affects anyone that works for the government. Not only does the employees of the government not get paid, but it affects the stores and multiple services that any average American may need. One of the jobs not mentioned in the article are any TSA agents at any airport, not just border patrol. Thousands of TSA agents are forced to work without pay. I think the people that are mostly affected by a government shutdown are people working for the government. Whether that be a police officer, money printer, TSA agent, post office, firefighters, active military, etc. I don’t think Congress should take full responsibility when everyone in the White House has a say. 

  31. I found this article very informative for anyone who may not understand why the government recently shut down. I had a lot of questions as to why the government shut down and this article cleared up a lot of questions I had about the issue. It’s unbelievable to me that something like this can happen and affect so many people. Something that shocked me is that 420,000 people were forced to work without pay during the shutdown. I can’t imagine how families are feeling who are struggling financially while still having to work without pay.

  32. This was a very informative article about the government shutdown. I have heard a lot about it, but it was good to read a more unbiased article about it. One thing about the news of the government shutdown that has bothered me is everyone seeming to act like Trump is the first one to ever have this happen to. Of course, as the article said, it is not common when one party controls both the White House and Congress. Additionally, this shutdown has gone on for an extremely long amount of time. Many people are out of work until the shutdown gets resolved, and it is devastatingly hurting many lives.

  33. This article was very interesting to me. I knew the basics of what a government shutdown is, but I never really knew all of the specifics. It is crazy to me that hundreds of thousands of people can be forced to take an unpaid leave of absence from their jobs or work without pay because the government disagrees on funding. It is was also very interesting to see how the shutdown can affect everyone both directly and indirectly. I knew that the shutdown effected many people who work for the government, but I never thought of how it could affect the economy as a whole because of the lack of spending that would otherwise occur.

  34. I always pride myself on keeping up with politics, and I have done so with the most recent shutdown. This article has enlightened me on some more serious details I wasn’t aware of. For example, it states 420,000 employees have been forced to work without pay, and I didn’t realize it was to that level. The craziest thing about this longest shutdown ever, is that the president had to end it without getting his way.

  35. This article was very informative as I did not know exactly what a government shutdown was. Hearing about the government being shutdown definitely irritates me because it is affecting the country and we shouldn’t be going through this all because of a disagreement on funding for a wall, which I think is ridiculous! Some of my coworkers have mentioned their feelings on this matter because they are also being affected by this personally and they are very concerned with what is going to happen if certain agencies and organizations run out of cash reserves. I have heard of a government shutdown occurring when President Obama was in office, but not quite to the extent that President Trump has placed on our country.

  36. I thought this article was very interesting and helpful. I never fully understood why shutdowns happened so this article was extremely helpful and relevant. Before this recent government shutdown occurred, I didn’t really care about the government shutdown because I thought the only people that were not getting paid were rich senators that already had plenty of money. This article really helped me understand the extent and impact of a shutdown with 420,000 employees being forced to work without pay. I also did not even thing about the impact of a shutdown on the business sector so I thought that information was fascinating to me. Overall, I thought that this article was a great read and really made me think about the impact of a government shutdown. I think it will be interesting how the next couple of weeks play out because there was recently a reopening of the government for a short period of time.

  37. During the time of the government shutdown, I was in shock that such actions could take place. As stated in the article, it is uncommon for a government shutdown to happen but obviously had occurred and still could potentially happen again. I feel that a lot things happen involving political views and social media. My family has been directly affected by the government shutdown, as my mother works for a government agency. This article gives a good overview of the context of the shutdown.

  38. I found this article very informative and intriguing. I have heard about government shut downs in the past but never understood what they were and their effects on society. I chose to read this article because the shutdown of this past month has prevented my background check for a job to be ran. Prior to reading this article, I had no idea that certain government employees were forced to work without being paid. Why would these individuals be forced to continue at their jobs without receiving appropriate compensation? I hope that more citizens that are uninformed of the effects of government shutdowns become aware of what exactly is going on in the government and how it impacts them.

  39. I’m not very educated on things that happen within the Government. When I heard about the Government Shutdown, I didn’t really understand what that meant. My dad explained a lot of it to me when it first shutdown. We just recently went out of town, and he explained that everyone working in the airport wasn’t getting paid. It was so crazy to think about all of the people that were/are continuing to work with no pay.

  40. before looking at this passage I looked at the government shutdown as juvenile. this passage helped me to look at the government shutdown in a different light. I still see it as a bit silly but I also see how different agenda for different parties can create this problem. I am just glad that I am not a politician or government worker so I can still go to my job and make an income.

  41. Until I read this article, I had not read or understood much about the government shut down. I have heard a lot of controversy surrounding this topic, but I had not done much research yet. I think the most frustrating part for me is the amount of people that have had to go without receiving a paycheck. I personally know a few families suffering from being without an income for so long.

  42. I knew and have known that the government has been shutdown for some time now, although I really did not know why to be honest. This article was very educational for me, because I really did not know much about it at all. What I got from this article is that the government shutdowns when those in the executive and legislative branches do not agree upon the same things in funding. Which to me sounds ridiculous, because then the government is forced to shutdown and affect everyone’s lives. I personally know people that work for TSA and the government and have been working without pay, which I could not even imagine. That is ridiculous, and there need to be a change in the government immediately.

  43. I found this article to be very informative. Before reading this article I did not know much about the government shutdown or why it was occurring. I would hear each side blaming the other and tune the whole situation out. This article allow me understand the meaning behind a government shutdown and what it means to the citizens. I also did not realize there were that many federal employees that were effected. The whole process still seems a bit stupid to me, but at least I know what is going on.

  44. I found this article very interesting, as I did not know everything that can cause the government to shutdown. To answer the question, should Congress be held accountable for the shutdown, I think it goes both ways. In this last instance on why the government had shut down, I have mixed feelings on the situation. In one way I do think Congress is at fault because President Trump is fighting for border security, and I do agree with him that maybe a wall would help. With that being said, Trump was asking for A LOT of money, I believe 5 billion. If I’m correct the shutdown was because Trump and Congress could not come to an agreement on the cost of it. In one way I think Congress should have just accepted and gave it to him, but in another way I thought of it as “Well maybe Trump should stop being a baby and just accept what Congress is willing to give him.” I know it could go both ways, and I think the easiest way to have avoided all this was they meet in the middle and move on. I would say they are both at fault, and if they could just work better and get along, then perhaps there would have been no shutdown and everyone could have worked and been paid without running into any issues.

  45. What ways can a government shutdown affect the average person?
    What persons or citizens might be affected most by the government shutdown?
    Should Congress be held accountable for the government shutdown?

    This article was such an interesting read for me. I do not follow up on politics but my cousin and sister had told me about Trump “shutting down the government”. This was bizarre to me because I did not know that was even possible. After reading this article, I definitely learned a lot. It is not all Trump. Yes, he is a reason for it, but there’s so much more that goes into it. Trump did not single handedly shut down the government on his own. The government had shutdown because of a disagreement and because Congress was unable to pass legislation to support the wall. It is a whole group and process, not just one person. After reading this article, I realized my cousin and my sister had seen the media’s point of view and what the press puts out. The average person who does not know much about how Congress, politics, and the government works, would not know the whole side of it all and this is why I was so intrigued reading this.
    A government shutdown could negatively affect the average person who would be receiving money from the government. For example, retired folks who receive social security, people who get money back during tax season, and people who need a government loan.
    The people who would be affected most by the government shutdown would be those who work for a part of the government that would be most affected by the shutdown. I think those 420,000 employees who are forced to work without pay would be most impacted because they would not be able to pay their bills and take care of their families and themselves.
    Like I stated in the beginning, it takes more than just one person to shutdown the government so I do not think Congress should be held accountable. As stated in the article, “If Congress passes all of the spending bills connected to the federal budget, a shutdown can be circumvented. However, if they cannot come to an agreement a government shutdown will occur.”, a government shutdown can occur both ways, if too many legislations are passed and if a disagreement happens and a legislation cannot be passed.

  46. I did not understand the full significance of a government shut-down, especially the one currently happening, and this article gave a great explanation. I did not realize how many people are affected by this other than the people directly in the white house. It is a slightly alarming that this has happened 3 times in Trump’s two years of office. Hopefully it does not become a trend so government working citizens do not miss another paycheck.

  47. This article was extremely interesting to me. I had very little understanding as to how or what happened during a government shutdown. It’s really disappointing to think there are people that are working without pay. I recently came home from a trip to Miami and the airports had several terminals that had been closed due to employees calling off and not them not getting paid. It’s disappointing. People has families they need to take care of and they aren’t getting paid to support their families.

  48. It was nice to read about how a government shutdown occurs and what leads up to it. Many people do not understand how that works and for some the knowledge will help them to stop blaming this person or that and understand the whole picture. I believe the average person can be affected either through the shutdown of government funded programs or even in their career choices. I have many friends who work for the government and have been affected with the lack of pay and trying to figure out a way to make ends meet. I do believe those people are the ones most affected and that Congress should be held responsible for the shutdown but at the same time who is to say they are wrong in their decision and who is to say they are right? We all should research and gain more knowledge before we point fingers.

  49. Don’t get me wrong I have heard many times where the government has been shut down but I never knew exactly what that means or what has to happen for it to be shut down and for so long over not approving something. When I was reading something it talked about how so many thousands of people were out of a job or still had to go into work but was not getting a paycheck. The legislature needs to come together and agree so that the government can re-open and get those people back to work with a steady paycheck.

  50. The article that I chose for this assignment was What is a Government Shutdown? What will happen. The way the government gets shut down is when; there is a “lack of approval with the federal budget.” Or if congress fails to pass legislation; or if the president doesn’t sign a appropriations bill.
    I always knew that a government shutdown took place because there isn’t any money in the budget to have something done or approved; but I never knew that it could also be due to the fact that the president refuses to sign a bill or congress not passing a legislation on it. This is why in the introduction of this article it says “an important component in operating a well functioning democracy is an educated citizenry.” The quicker and better we educated ourselves, the more informed we are; and how we can play a role in affecting a government shutdown.

  51. Before reading the article I wasn’t entirely sure what was entailed with a government shutdown. This really helped me better understand what exactly it is and how it not only affects government agencies but the employees as well. It can leave them without a job or income for as long as the government shutdown lasts.

  52. I chose this article because of how relevant it is to our lives, not just at the time it was written, but also because it will probably be relevant to our lives again sooner or later. I did not realize how uncommon it was since the house and congress are controlled by the same party. Also, I found it interesting to read about the effects of a shutdown and how many people it truly effects. Now that I know more about it, the idea of it sounds even worse to me and I do not believe that it should be allowed these adult politicians should not be allowed to have their inability to agree affect those who do not have a choice and their families.

  53. This article stood out to me because I never actually understood the whole government shutdown and how it could affect the people around me. I originally thought that the government shutdown only affected the government and not the people that work for the government as well. This article was very eye opening because it hits home for so many people that were not getting paid for weeks on end but still working. I also thought it was very surprising that other presidents have also issued a government shutdown but it wasn’t highly known because the shutdown was for such short time period. After reading this article I better understand the government shutdown and how it affects the people around us in our hometowns.

  54. I have always heard of what a shutdown was and why they are in place but I actually didn’t know that there were more shutdowns under Trump than the recent one that just happened.

  55. This article was both very interesting and informative to me. Until the recent government shut down, I was not aware that the government could completely shut down simply because the president could not get others to agree with him. That is both scary and sad that someone has that much power. While I do understand using your power to make a point to better the country, I don’t understand making others suffer in the process. I think about families who work for the government who must go without pay but continue to come to work in order to keep their position. Or those who depend on government funds such as food stamps to survive. How is this fair to them when they have no say so or control in whether Trump gets his way or not? The most recent shut down has affected people close to my family so I have seen the devastation first hand. Surely there must be another way.

  56. Every time I hear government shutdown I am never really concerned because I don’t know much about it and I feel like I have never been personally affected by it. But after reading this article I can see why you say that it is so important to understand what a shutdown is and that it can affect us all. It is surprising to me that educating the youth about things such as government shutdown isn’t more of a priority? At least in my experience it wasn’t. In a way a government shutdown almost sounds like somewhat of a childish occurrence that could be avoided which in turn could save many people from being affected and save our economy from a huge potential loss.

  57. I think government shutdowns are no laughing matter, but the sad reality is that it shows how reliant we are on the government when in reality I sometimes think government shutdowns so the opposite. We have become so reliant on the government that fear drives the media that chaos and anarchy are in hot pursuit. I think its a travesty and far from what our forefathers intended for this country that we have become so reliant on it.

  58. It was very interesting to learn about government shut downs. Trump’s presidency is the first time I have heard about them and I honestly had no idea what they meant. I never knew that shut downs were done due to financial reasons. I have been told and heard that the government shut downs we’ve been having are due to the funding of the Mexican border but this put it more into perspective. I know someone who was affected by the shut down that occurred around Christmas time so this made it a more personal matter for me.

  59. The fact that the government can just shut down and not do its job while suspending pay for regular government workers is infuriating to me. I had multiple friends affected by the most recent shutdown and I saw multiple posts circulating social media about regular people being severely negatively impacted by the shutdown and were unable to buy basic necessities. I just could not believe that all of these people were suffering because a giant man-baby couldn’t get funding for his ineffective wall plan.

  60. I never really understood in the past why the government what shut down and what it meant when it did so this was very informative. I find it interesting that it is mainly because of disagreements when it comes to the budget and spending. I also didn’t realize the effects it had on people. It amazes me that so many people had to work without pay and I think government shutdowns need to be avoided.

  61. I never really knew what a government shutdown actually was until these past two years with trump in the office. I watched it affect some of my family and friends whose careers depend on certain government agencies. I understand why it happened. Because the argument of funding the wall being built. But, I think there should be a system in place that prevents this from going so far.

  62. I remember when someone told me the government was shut down I thought the government was open all the time. I never fully understood what the purpose was. I think there should be something that restricts how long the government is shut down, to help the people who it affects. This was very informative and helped me to better understand the affects government can have on the people.

  63. I am definitely one of those people who do not fully understand what a government shutdown is, and I still get confused about what it really is because politics can be very confusing. I love to learn more about our government because it’s essential for a citizen of any country to know about their political system, especially with one as unique as America’s. I’m not quite sure who the shutdown really benefits, so I hope that the future administrations will avoid it at all costs.

  64. Recently in our world I have been hearing more about the government and the shutdowns. Only a few months ago did the government actually shut down. At first I was confused on what that meant and why it happened. This article is important for people to read as I’m sure I wasn’t the only one confused. A lot goes into the whole process that many don’t know. It is not a very common thing for the government to shut down, but it does happen so it is important to know why and what happens.

  65. Before reading this article I was really confused on what all happens when the government shuts down. I always heard about the shut down but I never really knew what it actually means. Now that I have read this article I know exactly what it means and I know exactly what happens. I think it is very important for our society to know what happens with the government and why. You see so many lies on social media about the government that you don’t know what to believe so I think it’s very important that we take the time to get educated on this subject.

  66. The last paragraph said it perfectly, “the average person may not understand the outs and ends of a government shutdown” . I didn’t realize how many people are affected during a government shutdown. I remember hearing about government officials not getting paid but I never knew it could affect normal people who don’t really have anything directly connected to the government. I now understand the necessity of a government shut down, but there should be regulations against it.

  67. In 2013 I was living in Elizabethtown, Kentucky and if you didn’t know it’s the town right next to Fort Knox. I would go on base 5 times a week for swim team and during the shutdown, they closed all gates in and out except for one of the gates and that one was out of the way back to town. I got to see first hand how it was affecting my community because most people who lived in Elizabethtown had a job working for the government. During the shutdown, people didn’t know when they could go back to work or when they would get their next paycheck. It was harder for average people to get on base during that. I knew people that didn’t work for the government but still worked on base and during that time it made it hard for those people to get to and from work. I’ve seen how it can affect people first hand and why government shutdown can cause more problems rather than solve them.

  68. Unfortunately, I have been directly affected by government shutdowns while in the military, and although service members are still paid, resources are put on hold which changes plans drastically depending on where you are located. Either way, government shutdowns can still affect the average citizen regardless of where they are employed. Because shutdowns are often undefined within the news, it’s important for students to realize their historical impacts and current effects. The politcal strategy involved in government shutdowns is a highly controversial issue that should be discussed academically within classrooms.

  69. Before this article, government shutdown was kind of a new topic to me, like I had heard about it but never understood really what it meant nor why everyone was so mad after the most recent government shutdown. I don’t really like the fact that the government can furlough people or make them work without pay, as that seems to violate a right as a citizen. The most recent government shutdown happened in 2019, and everyone I knew was talking about it, but I really didn’t understand what was going on or why it was such a big deal. I feel like this article explains a government shutdown really well and helps you really understand what happens when one occurs.

  70. Hopefully government shutdowns become less frequent. It feels like a bit of political theater creating major annoyances without being effective. It is not right for the legislative and executive branch to use federal employees as hostages in their impasses. If a CEO couldn’t agree with his CFO and no one in the business was paid until the dispute was resolved there would be major consequences. Hopefully in the future more reasonable minds are elected and government shutdowns become a thing of the past.

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