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Government shuts down for first time in nearly 20 years

The focus of the debate, however, wasn’t on government budget but rather on the Affordable Care Act, which the GOP was fighting to remove from the budget for the next fiscal year. The Senate refused to pass the three different proposals put forward by the House, all of which had amendments to undercut the so-called Obamacare.

More than 800,000 federal workers will now be furloughed.

Tuesday morning, government workers are supposed to come into their office, make shutdown preparations and turn off all email accounts and government-issued communication devices until further notice.

The Office of Management and Budget issued a memo late Monday evening, just minutes shy of midnight, informing all agencies to prepare for an orderly shutdown to be completed by the end of Oct. 1.

In a small victory, a military funding bill was passed by both chambers and signed by President Barack Obama late Monday evening. The Military Pay Protection Act exempts military pay from the shutdown; however, defense civilian employees are still likely to face furloughs.

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Several agency websites have already gone dark; the Agriculture Department’s was among the first.

The number of exempted employees varies greatly by agency.

Across the country, national parks will shut down, as will monuments and museums. In Washington, tours of the Capitol building will be halted, and the Smithsonian museums, the National Zoo and many federal buildings will close their doors.

During this shutdown, members of Congress and political appointees will continue to be paid. A special House-Senate committee is scheduled to meet this week to resolve the issues between the GOP and the Democrats.

Several agencies announced Tuesday morning their social media accounts would be inactive until appropriations are restored. Several websites have already gone dark.

 

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