I’m late to talk about this topic, however, I feel that now is as good as a time as any to explain what happened with Donald Trump’s government shutdown.
The United States federal government shutdown 2018-19 was the second major shutdown of the U.S federal government during Donald Trump’s presidency. This historic event occurred when the President and Congress weren’t able to agree on an appropriations bill to fund the operations of the federal government for the 2019 Fiscal year ( which runs from October 1, 2018, to September 30, 2019). There is a bill called the ‘anti-deficiency Act, this act makes impossible for federal departments or agencies from conducting non-essential operations without appropriate legislation in place. This ended resulting in 800,000 employees of nine executive departments had to shut down partially or in full, working employees had to work without pay.
The entire shutdown lasted from midnight on December 22, 2018, until January 25, 2019 (35 days). This shutdown is the longest in the U.S history.
The main reason for the shutdown ended up coming from Trump’s demands for $5.7 billion for the Wall (remember that?!) that was at the centre of his presidential campaign. The Republican-controlled Senate on December 2018, ended up passing a bill without wall funding. This seemed likely to be approved by Trump and his Republican House of Representatives. However, this all changed when Trump refused to sign any appropriations bill if it didn’t include wall funding due to heavy criticisms from some right-wing media outlets, saying he was backing down on his campaign promises.
This resulted in the house passing a ‘Stopgap’ bill with funding for the wall, but this lacked support in the Senate.
In January 2019 the House was now controlled by a Democrats majority, and they voted to approve the first appropriations bill. However, the President continued to say he would veto any bill that didn’t have any funding for the wall. Democrats and some Republicans opposed the shutdown with multiple bills being passed to reopen the government
The reason for the multiple bills being passed was the argument of those wanting the government to be reopened. They claimed the civil servants were essentially taken a hostage and actual negotiations can take place when the government was reopened.
January 25, 2019, an agreement was made between the Democrats and Trump. He promised to declare his support for a stopgap bill to reopen the government for negotiations for an agreement from both parties on a bill, however, if an agreement wasn’t reached, he’d shut down the government again.