As the political rhetoric continues to flare regarding the government shutdown, it’s no surprise that those doing the most complaining are the ones most affected by the shutdown.
Of the 50 states in the country, the two most highly affected by the government shutdown are Maryland and Virginia, both of which border Washington, D.C. As WalletHub explains, Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. contain the highest concentrations of federal jobs in the country.
This means that civilian federal workers not deemed to be essential personnel may not work.
The effects of a government shutdown don’t reach every corner of the country. According to PBS, many government services will continue despite the actions of the U.S. Congress. Americans still have access to things such as Social Security checks, Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements, and veterans’ health care.
PBS lists a handful of government agencies and services that will continue to work:
-The Border Patrol and Coast Guard
-The Transportation Security Administration
-The Postal Service
-The Federal Emergency Management Agency
-The air traffic control system
There are, of course, some barriers. Applicants may have to wait a while longer to receive a replacement Social Security card or a gun permit. National parks and museums also face some closures, though the official rules remain unclear.
The Smithsonian tweeted that its properties would remain open with the help of prior funds.
Update: The Smithsonian, including its museums, research centers & the National Zoo, will be OPEN Monday, Jan. 22.
The Smithsonian can use prior year funds still available to us to do so. We will update our status beyond Monday as soon as we know. #governmentshutdown
— Smithsonian (@smithsonian) January 20, 2018
The White House also sent out a handful of pictures as a way to inform the American public that they too were working.
Moments ago, the @WhiteHouse released photos of President @realDonaldTrump working with his staff during what they're calling the "Democrat shutdown." https://t.co/Gl9Xn7xulJ pic.twitter.com/WjMBc1E5Xr
— Fox News (@FoxNews) January 20, 2018
As many try to understand the implications of a government shutdown, American soldiers have been thrown into the middle of national debate. As the Boston Globe explains, active-duty personnel will continue working during the shutdown, but will only be paid through Feb. 1. Should the government remain shut down after that time, work will continue as scheduled, but without pay going forward. Active-duty personnel would only see their wages again once the shutdown ended or if President Trump decided to cover their pay.
Though Trump has repeatedly accused Democrats of not caring about service members, he is the one who can decide whether or not they see their salary. As the Globe explained, President Obama signed legislation to continue paying those in uniform during the 2013 government shutdown. Similarly, Trump holds the power to exempt certain government services from Congress’s recent actions.
‘‘Not only can the president decide who or what is an essential activity, the president can change his or her mind anytime,’’ clarified Stan Collender, who, according to the Globe, is a federal budget expert with Qorvis MSLGroup. ‘‘In the past, every president has exempted the military, for obvious reasons.’’
Until action is taken one way or another, several congressmen have expressed that they will forfeit their wages while the wages of active-duty personnel hang in the balance. Others have decided to donate to charity.