Government remains closed for 33rd straight day

Parties remain locked in funding stalemate

Photo courtesy US Capitol on Flickr | Government buildings remain closed as the federal shutdown goes on.

The United States Federal government has been shut down for 33 days, making it the longest government shutdown in U.S. history.

On Dec. 22, the government entered the shutdown after an impasse regarding President Donald Trump’s $5.7 billion request for funding of a border wall. Earlier in the month, the Senate unanimously passed an appropriations bill without the funding for the wall. Trump refused to pass any bill without funding and maintains that he will veto any bill that denies it. The House attempted to pass a stop-gap bill in order to secure the funding, but it lacked enough support.

President Trump offered an extension to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals immigration policy (DACA) on Jan. 19, as well as temporary protections for undocumented immigrants, in order to bring about compromise and end the crisis. This would give undocumented immigrants who entered the country as children a three-year reprieve from deportation. Democrats have opposed the proposition, refusing to discuss negotiations on wall funding until the government is reopened. 

The Senate will vote tomorrow on both Trump’s plan and a bipartisan compromise that will extend funding for federal agencies through Feb. 8.

Nine executive departments have been partially or fully shut down.

First-year political science major Sophie Boulter said, “It is painful to see so many workers out there that aren’t getting paid” because of politicians inability to come to an agreement.

The Antideficiency Act, which prohibits non-essential operations without proper legislation in place, has caused employee furloughs.

Agencies have left federal employees to miss their first paycheck with the potential to miss more.

Several charities are offering housing and financial assistance to the unpaid workers, butit hasn’t been enough to cover all of the affected indviduals.

Xavier students have felt the impact of the government shutdown as well.

First-year business undecided major Ryan Persons encountered delays at the airport last week as a result of the shutdown. Person’s security experience ran at least an hour at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York. His past experiences normally took about 20-30 minutes. He explained that this was because “the airport was low on staff.”

Currently, a lot of airport employees are working without pay. More than10 percent of TSA employees called out of work on Sunday alone.

Other government agencies are experiencing similar issues.  The U.S. Coast Guard missed a pay check, the first time the armed services missed a pay check during a shutdown.

It is expected that this will not end until the government is out of the shutdown and funding is restored.

The federal government cannot operate at its full capacity until an agreement in Congress is reached.

By: Sierra Ross | Staff Writer