10 things that could ruin your day if the government shuts down
That family trip to the Grand Canyon could be in jeopardy if Congress and the White House fail to reach a budget agreement.
April 7th, 2011
07:48 PM ET

10 things that could ruin your day if the government shuts down

The list of collateral effects of a potential government shutdown keeps growing and people are none too pleased about it. Here are just a few of the negative impacts that could arise if Congress and the White House fail to reach an agreement on the budget (click here to view in chart form):

  • The lawmakers who hold the cards will still get paid. Their staffers might be furloughed, though. That has prompted a few lawmakers to announce they'll refuse shutdown pay,but even that has elicited critiques of political posturing.
  • Roughly 800,000 federal workers won't get paid because they're considered nonessential and therefore, the first to be furloughed. That includes people who work in national parks because they'll be closed, ruining countless long family road trips. And it's not just the loss of income that hurts - for many, it's being labeled dispensable when they know their jobs are anything but nonessential.

  • As the shutdown looms, some political leaders are taking the opportunity to fundraise and rally their supporters. The executive director of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee sent out an appeal asking for a minimum $5 donation saying the organization wants to raise $100,000 in the next 36 hours.
  • You'll still get your Social Security checks but don't expect anyone to be around to answer your questions about benefits. The people who take questions on Social Security and Medicare questions will not be at work and most government websites will shut down or have limited functionality.
  • Various agencies with the Department of Health and Human Services will operate in a patchwork fashion. The National Institutes of Health will not accept new patients or start new clinical trials. The Food and Drug Administration won't operate at full capacity but will have some inspectors on staff. As a result, all FDA inspections of food processing facilities and drug manufacturing plants will be prioritized by risk.
  • Word is getting around that a government shutdown doesn't actually save taxpayers money. For one, it will cost the government money to ensure a smooth transition to a shutdown. Then there's the lost revenue from a variety of sources, from government services to gift shops in government-run attractions such as Yosemite National Park and DC's National Gallery of Art.

How would a government shutdown anger you?

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Filed under: Budget
soundoff (2,555 Responses)
  1. dnsmith

    The republicans in Congress passed a bill to keep the government from shutting down. If the democrats don't approve it the shut down will be 100% democrats fault.

    April 8, 2011 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • frank

      It's his fault! No, it's her fault! Johnny bit my finger! he's guilty!.....You get the point. We can all pass the blame, but you can see how "constructive" that has been within our nations political system....

      April 8, 2011 at 12:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ron

      @dnsmith they passes a bill that Democrats agreed to or have you not been watching. The problem is the Rep's put in the riders on social issues that have nothing to do with Fiscal policy and need to be handled as separate bills. That is the hold up. The Dems have already agreed to the cuts.

      April 8, 2011 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • MostlyAmused

      Thank you, Ron! It is indeed those riders that are the holdup. They were added specifically to cause the delays and ruckus we now see so that Boehner and his buddies can go on TV and cry about how the Dems won't vote for saving babies or some other such B.S.

      April 8, 2011 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Paul

    How about a CNN article that starts by: "10 things that can ruin your day if the government doesn't balance the budget"

    April 8, 2011 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Completly outraged

    This is crazy! How can the "lawmakers" get pd and our service men and women aren't? They still have to report to work so why is it the individuals who make more money are still receiving pay but our most honorable citizens will receive delayed/half pay? Mr & Mrs lawmaker, try E-3 member. Do your job, how dare your own political agendas cause such a hardship on our nations service members.

    April 8, 2011 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Peter

    Get this clown posse of idiots out of the business of planning the budget for our nation. It is obvious that they lack the education needed to do so concisely and objectively. The current budget debate among our nations leaders is uneducated and nothing short of a joke amongst the rest of the developed world. Can anyone tell me what the cost of our "wars" is on an annual basis by the way?

    April 8, 2011 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  5. SUSIE


    April 8, 2011 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • McAfee

      Not exactly. Perhaps I misread the article but the impression I got is that Military Personnel may or may not be paid on time, but will get paid eventually.

      April 8, 2011 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
  6. EmperorObama

    Yes! Woo Hoo! I'm goin golfing I'm goin golfing!

    April 8, 2011 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Tfjas

    Latest is the republicans are holding out to de-fund planned parenthood. The new "he man women hater club."

    April 8, 2011 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • tyler durden

      Democrats had the opportunity to pass this budget last September when they controlled everything.

      April 8, 2011 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • MostlyAmused

      Actually, Tyler, they didn't because the margin was not enough to guarantee passage. The House has been working on the budget since before the elections, BTW.

      April 8, 2011 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
  8. mike4567

    one more reason to keep republicans out of office. They have made this into a democratic vs. republican without realizing how it would affect millions of people out there. I suggest they both sit down and work out their issue this is beyond pride and should be handled in a way to keep other families in mind because it sure enough wont affect theirs.

    April 8, 2011 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • McAfee

      It is a bit simplistic to lay all the blame on the Republicans for this happening. When you say that it is their fault this has turned into a Democratic-Republican issue, it may be much more appropriate to say this is the manifestation of a few things. First, it may be the manifestation of genuine political divergence withing the country, and perhaps by extension, the federal legislature. Additionally, it may also be accurate to say that this is a not uncommon outcome of a democratic government (democratic as in Democracy). In our country, we have leaders who are poorly insulated from the capricious and often illogical politics of American people. This means that, by trying to seek re-election constantly, they are typically prevented from making hard or unpopular choices that experts would agree is the best decision.

      But that's just my two cents.

      April 8, 2011 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
  9. dnsmith

    Abortion talk is not in the GOP bill; only federal financing of abortions. The eugenic pushing "Family Planning" bunch should never have been funded by the tax payer, nor should public broadcasting be funded by the tax payer.

    April 8, 2011 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chris

      Are you dumb? It is illeagal from planned parenthood to fund abortions. That measn that either private insurance pays or you pay. And this is on the bill otherwise no one would be talking about it DUMMY!

      April 8, 2011 at 1:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • MostlyAmused

      @dnsmith>>Abortion IS the holdup because not only are the Republicans trying to defund PP, they also inserted a line that would make it illegal for private insurance to cover the procedure–period. No D&C even after a miscarriage...

      April 8, 2011 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • MostlyAmused

      Oh, and the same people pushing this are the ones who are trying in one state to make having a miscarriage a crime if one does not immediately report it to the police and be examined for evidence of inducement. Yeah, it is getting that bad!

      April 8, 2011 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
  10. drjpaul

    are any of those 800,000 jobs essiental? If they are not, they should have been eliminated long ago. a good stop at reducing spending. Maybe if there were fewer taxes on businesses, barriers to hiring could provide these guys with private sector jobs

    April 8, 2011 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • MostlyAmused

      "Essential" is one of those things that needs clarifying. Mission essential means one needs to be on site to prevent disaster whether fiscal or physical. But the other jobs are not unnecessary. It just means the work is routine and regular and will not suffer (too much) if there is a shutdown of a week or so. More than that, you WILL see adverse affects far beyond what is listed above.

      Hope you got your "much deserved" tax over-refund. If not, a shutdown means you have to wait that much longer.

      April 8, 2011 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
  11. mo stewart

    Don't forget other "essential" employees who are required to report for work but don't know when they will get paid. The military and many DHS personnel are in this category. Since they are at the bottom of the food chain they are already the most financially vulnerable. Furloughed employees can be eligible for unemployment benefits in as little as a week some places, but essential employees will be working and therefore ineligible. Working and no money? Great solution.
    Several of my coworkers who are on leave that was approved months ago have received a call telling them they may have to decide between taking leave without pay or reporting for work. Quite the treat in the middle of a hard earned family vacation.
    The deeper you go the more screwed up it gets...

    April 8, 2011 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • momof2

      the last time we had a govt shutdown, here in IL furloughed employees were NOT able to collect unemployment because they were not considered unemployed. They still had jobs. Talk about the worst of both worlds–you still have to pay for child care and commuting costs to go to work but you get no pay to cover even those costs.

      and unless something changed, same is true of striking employees.

      April 8, 2011 at 1:47 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Neil

    IT is a fault of BOTH parties. Unless we realize as how both parties are collectively screwing us, there is no solutions. By two party system, politicians are dividing us and conquering. We need to throw everyone out andcget 3rd Party or some fresh people in congress. Otherwise just tighten your belt. We are on a downfall crash pretty soon. Wake up people and stop arguing over party lines. They all are crooks.

    April 8, 2011 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
  13. GrogInOhio

    While we're debating the government budget and shutdown, I feel compelled to remind all that I paid more taxes in 2010 than General Electric. Just sayin'...

    April 8, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Mr Bill

    We can play this game too people, DON"T PAY YOUR TAXES. No IRS to come and get you. I think that to look at these animals with their strarched ties and $100 haircuts...... LET THEM EAT CAKE

    April 8, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
  15. lee

    There are more pressing issues to be concerned about, like our national debt. Countries are already not investing in US because we have no real wealth.

    April 8, 2011 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
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