October 6, 2013

The Government Shutdown


Maggie: Since the government shut down last Tuesday, the consequences have been felt across the country. Shelby Holliday checks out who has been affected and who might be in the future.

Protestors: Stop the shutdown! Stop the shutdown!

Shelby: As the government shutdown enters a second week, many Americans are begging Congress to reach an agreement. Even this fourth-grade class in Nebraska is speaking up.

Fourth-grade student: Dear Mr. President Obama. My fourth-grade class was going to go to Homestead National Monument on Tuesday but you guys are in a disagreement because of the budget.

Shelby: Their field trip is on hold because the shutdown means all national monuments are closed. National parks, zoos and museums are turning visitors away too.

Nancy Thyparambil: Every single one of them wrote a letter to him and stated how they think the Congress and the government and the president should all get together and help this disagreement to be over so our country can get back to normal.

Shelby: But for now, the country is far from normal because lawmakers can’t agree on how the government should spend money.

Food inspections have been halted, intelligence operations limited, programs for students cut, and some 800,000 federal employees have been sent home from work until there is resolution.

Federal employees who are considered essential are still working during the shutdown, like active duty military members, border patrol and most law enforcement. But instead of getting paid for their work, they are basically getting IOUs from the government.

Protestors: Fund the government!

Shelby: Some want Congress to end the shutdown immediately.

Sam Samhouri: It’s a nightmare, it’s a nightmare. For me, it’s a nightmare.

Shelby: But others say it will benefit the country in the long run by forcing Congress to come together.

Ken Galef: I believe that the shutdown is a good thing because it, hopefully, will get people to come to the table. At the moment, I don’t see people talking.

Shelby: Economists estimate the U.S. is losing $300 million every day the government remains closed. And if Congress can’t reach an agreement soon, the impact will spread.

Federal courts could be shut down around October 15th, payments to veterans and members of the military could be halted at the end of the month, and thousands of kids could be turned away from federally funded programs through the end of the year.

Another big fear is that the U.S. government will lose its ability to borrow money on October 17th unless Congress agrees to raise the debt ceiling. That is the amount of money the country can borrow.

Ken Fernandez: It would be suicide for our nation and our economy, as fragile as it is right now.

Shelby: Shelby Holliday, Channel One News.

Maggie: To keep tracking all the updates on the shutdown, just head to


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