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United States: government shutdown breaks records in duration

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Between 1995 and 1996, a similar incident occurred during the Clinton administration, which lasted 21 days. This already has lasted 22

United States: government shutdown breaks records in duration

The government closure is officially the longest in history. The so-called "shutdown" of the federal government of the United States is a partial closure that has without payment to 800 thousand state employees due to the disagreement between President Donald Trump and sectors of the opposition. The disagreement is because of the wall that the president intends to build on the border with Mexico.

Leer en español: Estados Unidos: el cierre de gobierno rompe récords en duración

The shutdown has already lasted 22 days, breaking the record that dated from the government of Bill Clinton, who went through something similar between 1995 and 1996. During the Clinton administration's closing, the president had his famous affair with Monica Lewinsky, a intern who worked with the president due to the lack of personnel that was afflicting the White House at that time.

Shutdown's reason

The press has reported that neither side gives in, as President Donald Trump plans to invest $ 5.7 billion dollars to fulfill his mission to build the wall, but the Democratic opposition in Congress, led by Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi, refuses to release funds to finance a project they consider ineffective in combating illegal immigration.

However, that is not the worst of the situation. The president declared a national emergency to obtain the money by skipping Congress, a visceral measure that would lead the United States to a political storm and a long legal battle over the overreaching of professional powers.

 

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According to El Tiempo, Trump will not sign any law that finances the non-essential activities of the federal government -and that affects 25% of that labor force-, if he does not receive the aforementioned $5,700 million dollars. The Democrats, in addition to refusing to give him such amount of money, approved a series of laws that would allow the reopening of the government and the possibility of continuing to negotiate. In the background, they left the issue of the wall and border security. In the midst of this clash, thousands of families are being affected.

The shutdown seems not to end, and, in fact, since last Friday, January 11, Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State, is the only one scheduled to appear on television by the government.

What are the consequences?

 

There are several impacts that a government closure brings. According to El Comercio de Perú, these would be the most serious:

  • One of the biggest consequences of the closure is that many workers are without payment. It is estimated that up to nine ministries, National Security, Justice, Housing, Agriculture, Commerce, Interior, and Treasury, have been affected because a large part of federal employees are still on temporary leave due to lack of funds. On the other hand, the 800 thousand workers already mentioned, have had to continue their work without pay. Some hope for a retroactive pay, but the government does not give guarantees.
  • Insecurity in air transport. Transportation officials have requested sick leave, which has caused thousands of passengers to face long lines and controls due to the lack of personnel at airports and a logical deficit in safety standards.
  • Paralyzed tourism in parks and museums. It is estimated that one third of the parks of the National Park Service (NPS) closed their doors since the beginning of the "Shutdown". Those that are open are lacking personnel for maintenance work.
  • Delays in science and health. Rush Holt, director of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, informed that the forced resignations of scientists assigned to federal agencies have caused the sector to also suffer partial closure. There is concern about the limited possibility of accessing federal data and awarding project financing.
  • Impact on agriculture. The agencies in charge of handling the applications have been closed since December 28. In general, there is no financing from the Department of Agriculture, so the peasant sector is paralyzed in their projects.
  • Eviction danger. The Department of Housing and Urban Development has seen 1 thousand 150 administration contracts expire with tenants who rent out their houses to low-income people. By the end of February, one million more contracts would expire. This would be fatal for people who need support to pay their rent.

 

LatinAmerican Post | Onofre Zambrano
Translated from "Estados Unidos: el cierre de gobierno rompe récords en duración"

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