When Is the 2018 Government Shutdown? Has the Government Shut Down Yet?

tax refunds government shutdown


The U.S. government partially shut down on December 22, 2018.

Because at least two thirds of the Senate didn’t approve the current proposed budget bill that was passed by the House and includes border wall funding, the government went into partial shutdown mode at midnight on Saturday, December 22.

During remarks at the White House on Friday, Trump said of the then looming shutdown, via NBC, “I hope we don’t. But we are totally prepared for a very long shutdown and this our only chance that we’ll ever have in our opinion, because of the world and the way it breaks out, to get great border security.” You can see a list of past governmental shutdowns and how long they lasted here.

Here’s what you need to know about what will happen and when, with the 2018 government shutdown:

The Senate Will Vote on the Budget by Six in the Evening on Friday; the Bill Has Been Described as ‘Dead on Arrival’ by CNN

The spending bill that was passed in the House on Thursday night has been described by many publications as “dead on arrival” in the Senate, including CNN. This is because the bill now includes the $5 billion in border wall funding that Trump requested, CNN reports, and it is incredibly unlikely that Democratic senators will approve that bill. The vote would need at least a majority vote to take the bill to the floor, and 60 votes to be approved, but given that many GOP senators are not expected to return for the vote, it likely won’t even get majority approval.

Trump has since asked House Majority leader Mitch McConnell to use the “nuclear option,” which would end the right to filibuster legislation and allow the bill to be passed with a majority vote in the Senate. But again, it’s looking unlikely that even a majority vote is possible for Friday evening.

Here’s Who Will Be Affected by the Partial Government Shutdown, if it Occurs

Here are the federal departments that will be shut down if the government shutdown takes place:

  • Department of the Treasury
  • Department of Agriculture
  • Homeland Security Department
  • Department of the Interior
  • Department of State
  • Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Department of Transportation
  • Department of Commerce
  • Department of Justice

According to CNBC, around 420,000 federal workers at agencies including the FBI, TSA, DEA, and Department of Homeland Security will continue to work without a regular paycheck, and might be without a paycheck for weeks, depending on how long the shutdown could take.

What’s more, CNBC notes that an additional approximate 380,000 federal workers would be placed on temporary leave without receiving pay, including many workers for NASA and the Department of Commerce. Included in that list of employees would be those who work for the Forest and National Park services, those who work for the IRS, and those who work for Housing and Urban Development.

Here’s How Long the 2018 Government Shut Down Could Last

There is no law that mandates the limit of a government shutdown. What’s more, POTUS tweeted early in the morning on Friday, December 21, that the shutdown could take a “very long time,” if Democratic Senators don’t vote for a bill that includes border wall funding.

He wrote, “The Democrats, whose votes we need in the Senate, will probably vote against Border Security and the Wall even though they know it is DESPERATELY NEEDED. If the Dems vote no, there will be a shutdown that will last for a very long time. People don’t want Open Borders and Crime!”

The Post Office Will Still Be Operational During a Government Shutdown

You don’t have to worry about your holiday packages arriving on time, should the government shutdown. According to Vox, the Post Office will continue to run as usual, because it’s sourced by an independent source of revenue, and therefore isn’t impacted by the annual appropriations process.


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