The History Of Government Shutdowns In The U.S.

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tags: Government Shutdowns



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●   Federal Funding Gaps: A Brief Overview (Congressional Research Service)

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The is not the first time Congress has had little time left to find a deal to prevent a government shutdown. But what lessons were learned from previous government shutdown showdowns? Who has the power, who gets the blame, and what does the history of these confrontations tell us about this current situation?

Transcript

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST: Travel back in time with me for a moment to 1981, the government shutdown. Two-hundred-forty-one-thousand federal employees were furloughed, and this is what it sounded like when you called the White House switchboard.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: In the absence of appropriations, the White House is involved in an orderly phase-down. All non-essential personnel have been furloughed. No one is here to answer your call.

KELLY: OK, that was 1981. And this week, the possibility of a government shutdown looms again over Washington. Lawmakers have until midnight tomorrow to find a way to avert that. Joining me now to ponder what we've learned from previous shutdown dramas is NPR's Ron Elving, senior editor and our correspondent on the Washington desk. Hey, there Ron. ...

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