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What Is a Government Shutdown? Here’s What Happens

What Is a Government Shutdown? Here’s What Happens

Lawmakers are scrambling and headlines are screaming Friday as the U.S. government heads towards a shutdown. But what does that actually mean?

Congress needs to pass a budget resolution by the end of Friday to fund the government. But the political parties can’t come to agreement on the bill, wrangling especially over whether to include immigration measures, like a fix for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, and whether to pass a short-term fix or come to a lasting budget agreement.

Democrats are blaming Republicans, who control the White House and both houses of Congress, for the mess; Republicans, who need cooperation from the other side to pass the funding bill with 60 votes, are blaming Democrats. (The House voted Thursday night to avoid the shutdown, but the bill now faces a murkier future in the Senate.)

Here’s what you need to know about government shutdowns.

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Trump Signs ‘Families First’ Relief Bill Into Law: Here’s What That Could Mean For You

Trump Signs ‘Families First’ Relief Bill Into Law: Here’s What That Could Mean For You

While his administration and congressional leaders continued to hammer out a trillion-dollar COVID-19 stimulus package, President Trump signed into law Wednesday evening the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, the second bipartisan coronavirus relief bill Congress has passed so far  the first providing around $8 billion in emergency funding for emergency prevention and response efforts. So what’s in the “Families First” bill? Below is a breakdown of its key provisions.

The Families First law addresses the following key priorities, among others:

  1. provides additional funding for nutrition and food assistance programs, particularly in light of schools being shutdown and additional needs for elderly assistance programs
  2. expands paid leave benefits
  3. expands unemployment benefits
  4. provides coronavirus testing at no cost to consumers
  5. temporarily increases the Medicaid federal medical assistance percentage

Food and Nutrition Assistance Funding: Families First infuses significant federal money — nearly a billion dollars’ worth  into various nutrition assistance programs,

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The Government Shutdown Was the Longest Ever. Here’s the History.

The Government Shutdown Was the Longest Ever. Here’s the History.

The longest shutdown in American history ended on Friday, after 34 full days. That easily exceeded the previous record, under President Bill Clinton in 1995, of 21 days.

In total, there have been 21 gaps in government funding since 1976, though the level of shutdown has varied. The current federal shutdown is a partial one, as many agencies were already funded through this fiscal year, which ends in September.

DEC. 22, 2018

Trump

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DEC. 16, 1995

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OCT. 1, 1978

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