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Why Does US Government Seem To Be On Point Of Shutting Down All The Time?

Every December, it appears like the US government is in the same place: frantically attempting to prevent yet another government shutdown, with all of the associated economic and political concerns.

Why Does US Government Seem To Be On Point Of Shutting Down All The Time?

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  3 Dec 2021 10:57 AM GMT

NEW YORK: Every December, it looks as though the US government is in the same place: feverishly striving to avoid yet another government shutdown, with all of the economic and political implications it entails.

Congress is rushing to pass a continuing resolution (CR), or short-term budget plan, this week to keep the government running when current funding ends on Friday. On Thursday, Democrats and Republicans announced a deal to extend government funding through February, but the package still has to pass both the House and Senate.

Every year, it looks that the government shutdown will occur as Congress has until the end of September to pass yearly budget legislation, if it misses that deadline, it usually passes a short-term funding bill that lasts until December, setting the stage for a government confrontation right before the new year.

Official government shutdowns did not begin until the 1980s, when Attorney General Benjamin Civiletti determined that federal agencies could not spend money until Congress had given their permission.

Shutdowns have been more regular in recent years, and this is due to the fact that they have gotten more common. Since 2013, there have been four government shutdowns, the most recent of which occurred in 1996. (Shutdowns were also common in the 1980s and 1990s, though Congress avoided utilising this tactic in subsequent years.)

Predictions of shutdowns, as well as actual shutdowns, reflect the polarisation of Congress. On practically everything, including budget legislation, Democrats and Republicans have battled to achieve an accord.

One explanation for this is that budget legislation are increasingly being used as platforms for political objectives that legislators have been unable to pass earlier in the year.

These measures are generally included in appropriations bills because they are considered must-pass legislation; if they do not pass, federal agencies would be underfunded, and key services like immigration courts, national parks, and airport security will be unable to operate at full capacity.


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