Longest Shut-Down in the History of US and Suffering of People


It is not the first time, but longest “Shut Down” in the history of United States of America (US). Usually shutdowns in United States (US) politics refer to a funding gap period that causes a full or partial shutdown of federal government operations and agencies. They are caused when there is a failure to pass sufficient appropriation bills or a temporary continuing resolution to fund the government for a fiscal year, and primarily occur when there is a disagreement over a proposed appropriation bill among the House of Representatives, the Senate, and President. Per the current interpretation of the 1884 Anti-deficiency Act, a “lapse of appropriation” due to a political impasse on proposed appropriation bills requires that the US federal government curtail agency activities and services, close down non-essential operations and thus furlough non-essential workers, and retain essential employees in departments covering the safety of human life and/or protection of property - voluntary services in these respective essential areas may only be accepted during emergencies.

This time President Trump wanted allocation of funds for building a “Wall” on its border with Mexico, to check illegal migration, smuggling, drug trafficking etc. While the “Berlin Wall” was removed, and the whole world in emerging into a global village.  North and South Yemen re-united. Talks on Korean reunification, is under way. Everywhere in the world, people are talking about “Peace, Harmony and Stability”. Under this scenario, talking about building a wall, may reminds us the “Cold War Era”. Youth are fed-up of cold war era and may oppose any reversal in any part of world.

As of 28 January 2019, since the enactment of the US government's current budget and appropriations process in 1976, there been a total of 22 funding gaps in the federal budget, of which 10 of these have led to federal employees being furloughed, with shutdowns also capable of occurring within state, territorial, and local levels of government.

Some of the most significant shutdowns in US history have included: three major shutdowns in the 1980s during the Presidential term of Ronald Reagan over opposition to proposal against his political beliefs; the 21-day shutdown of 1995-1996 during the Presidential term of Bill Clinton over opposition to major spending cuts; the 16-day shutdown in 2013 during the Presidential term of Barack Obama caused by an argument between Democrats and Republicans over measures concerning the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; and the 35-day shutdown of 2018-2019 during the Presidential term of Donald Trump, the longest shutdown in US history, caused by a disagreement by Democrats to approve funding a new US–Mexico border wall.

The worst effected of such Shut-Downs are Federal Government 800,000 Employees, who could not be paid in time. It is worth mentioning that, in US most of the people, after getting a job, buy basic necessities of life on instalments like: House, Cars, Refrigerator, TV, and Furniture etc. even they buy grocery on credit cards. If they are not paid on time, they could not pay their due installments, which causes huge economic loss to individuals and to the national economy. The whole economic cycle is halted and severely affecting the general public.

However, President Trump in his defense said “Local people know who they are when they go for groceries and everything else. And I think what Wilbur was probably trying to say was that they will work along, I know banks are working along. If you have mortgages, the mortgagees, the mortgage, the folks collecting the interest and all of those things, they work along. And that's what happens in time (sic) like these. They know the people, they have been dealing with them for years and they work along. The grocery store... and I think that's probably what Wilbur Ross meant. But I haven't seen his statement. He's done a great job, I will tell you that." 

But panic and suffering of people were witnessed on ground. Especially the middle and lower middle class has suffered a lot. It might also impact the popularity of President Trump. While, Democrats has already enjoying supremacy in Congress. If appropriate measures are not taken immediately, it can lead toward political chaos. US being a super power, is usually referred as role model, but such incidents may harm its reputation.

We hope, the situation may be settled amicably and immediately, to end the suffering on common man.