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Posted on Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 10:46 a.m.

Federal government shutdown: 5 things you need to know

By Cindy Heflin

CHELSEAPOSTAL.jpg

Mail delivery will not be affected by a government shutdown. Here, postal clerk Julie Wright delivers a load of mail to be sorted before delivery at the Chelsea post office in this 2007 file photo.

Here are five things you need to know if a federal government shutdown occurs at midnight:

  1. You will still get your mail. The Postal Service is self-funded and won't be affected by a shutdown.
  2. If you get Social Security, you will still get your check. Also, government officials have said Medicare funding will continue, at least for a while.
  3. Your flight will likely get off the ground. Amtrak trains will also still run.
  4. You need to file your taxes on time, but your refund might be delayed if you file a paper return.
  5. You probably won't be able to get a passport.The State Department will cancel a special Passport Day scheduled for Saturday if there's a shutdown, and only emergency passports will be processed as long as the shutdown lasts.

Comments

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 10:06 p.m.

"How about blaming the Democratic controlled Congress who FAILED to pass a 2011 budget this past October when they were supposed to?" The primary reason the previous Congress did not pass a annual budget was due to Senate Republicans who blocked passage through the "filibuster". They did this because they saw the results of the election coming and were betting they'd have control of both houses of Congress. And, in any event , there was no gov't shutdown, was there? Aside from those two important FACTS, it's almost the same thing! Good Night and Good Luck

Greggy_D

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 9:37 p.m.

How about blaming the Democratic controlled Congress who FAILED to pass a 2011 budget this past October when they were supposed to?

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 10:40 p.m.

Tag. You're &quot;it&quot;. <a href="http://www.ombwatch.org/node/11434" rel='nofollow'>http://www.ombwatch.org/node/11434</a> <a href="http://thehill.com/blogs/on-the-money/appropriations/134709-senate-sends-funding-bill-to-house" rel='nofollow'>http://thehill.com/blogs/on-the-money/appropriations/134709-senate-sends-funding-bill-to-house</a> It makes no specific mention of a filibuster, but that is the only way the Republicans could block passage of an omnibus bill given Democratic majorities in both houses. And, BTW, modern &quot;filibusters&quot; are not &quot;Mr. Smith Goes to Washington&quot; filibusters. Actions in the senate can be blocked simply if there are not 60 votes for the measure. There is no necessity to actually &quot;filibuster&quot;. Indeed, the internet is a wonderful thing fore those who know how to use it. Good Night and Good Luck

Greggy_D

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 10:21 p.m.

Your turn Ghost....please provide links of a Republican filibuster last October regarding the 2011 budget.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 10:05 p.m.

The primary reason the previous Congress did not pass a annual budget was due to Senate Republicans who blocked passage through the &quot;filibuster&quot;. They did this because they saw the results of the election coming and were betting they'd have control of both houses of Congress. And, in any event , there was no gov't shutdown, was there? Aside from those two important FACTS, it's almost the same thing! Good Night and Good Luck

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 9:05 p.m.

The speaker of the House has decreed that he wants to pass any budget bill with a minimum of 218 Republican votes, that it will not be enough to craft a majority in the House that needs votes from Democrats. Source: <a href="http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110403/ap_on_go_co/us_boehner_herding_votes" rel='nofollow'>http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110403/ap_on_go_co/us_boehner_herding_votes</a> (there are MANY other links to this effect) To do that, he must get the right-wing of his party, the Teapublicans, to vote for the bill. But anything that the Teapublicans will vote for is unlikely to pass the Senate. He could easily get a bill that the Senate will approve with a majority of House Democrats and moderate House Republicans. But he will not let such a bill come to a vote. Very democratic, that. So, if you want to blame someone for the impending shutdown, blame the Speaker who will not cut a deal that might require the votes of Democrats in order to clear his chamber. Good Night and Good Luck

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 8:40 p.m.

&quot;Something else you should know about this shutdown is that the men and women of the military who are protecting this country just had their pay cut in HALF!&quot; OK. I'll bite. How so? Can you provide a link? I mean, surely this must be available on literally dozens of reputable websites. Note: that they will not be paid during the shutdown is a certainty. That does not mean that they will not be paid for that time--the pay simply will be late. And it certainly does not mean their pay will be cut in half. So, link please. Inquiring minds want to know. Good Night and Good Luck

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 9:48 p.m.

Thanks for the link. Now let me explain it to you. Soldiers who receive a mid-month paycheck on the 15th are being paid for the work they do from the 1st to the 15th. At present, their work is funded only to the 8th. So, IF the gov't is shut down next Friday, they will receive a paycheck for the 1st-8th. That will be a little bit more than 50% of that which they expected. And IF a gov't shutdown happens, and IF it lasts to the 15th, rest assured that when a budget is passed, all gov't workers will be paid in full for the missed time, even if they did not work during the shutdown. So, in sum, there is no &quot;pay cut.&quot; That is a statement made either in ignorance or in an effort to inflame. There is no third possibility. So, yes, the internet is a wonderful thing. Some of A2.com's readers ought to avail themselves of it. Even better, they ought read the material in the links before they spout their opinions. Good Night and Good Luck

Greggy_D

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 9:41 p.m.

Just found this amazing tool. It's called Google. <a href="http://www.kirotv.com/news/27480721/detail.html" rel='nofollow'>http://www.kirotv.com/news/27480721/detail.html</a>

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 9:14 p.m.

Time for a reality check. The first military payday that might be missed is next Friday, April 15. It seems very unlikely that any government shutdown, if it happens, will last that long. If it does last that long, the only service members who will miss that payday are those who receive mid-month pay. Not that that makes it right but, in my experience, most soldiers take end of month pay only. And for those soldiers and their families who find themselves in a pinch due to that missed paycheck, if it happens, all of the services have organizations that are either private services (e.g., the Red Cross) or operate with non-appropriated funds (e.g., Army Emergency Relief) that can help these soldiers and their families. Again, none of this justifies shutting down the government or depriving ANYONE, service members or anyone else, of the paychecks on which their families depend. But those in the military, far more so than their civilian counterparts, have organizations and structures upon which they can depend to see them through any brief shutdown. Finally, no one is talking about an actual pay cut of any sort for the military. At least no one that I have seen. So I'm still waiting for the link. Good Night and Good Luck

sara justice

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 8:54 p.m.

yes there is uncertainty about the military not getting paid but whether or not its half or none, or late, its going to hurt families all over the US. We dont live on base, so if we cant pay or rent we can end up homeless if this goes on for too long, we can lose our car, we live check by check, and we have no other family members to rely on to help. the pay being &quot;simply late&quot; isnt an option.

shaggy

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 7:17 p.m.

Something else you should know about this shutdown is that the men and women of the military who are protecting this country just had their pay cut in HALF!

Greggy_D

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 8:13 p.m.

But the welfare checks still go out in full. How messed up is that?

leaguebus

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 7:05 p.m.

<a href="http://www.ombwatch.org/files/budget/OMB_Watch-HR1_Policy_Riders.pdf" rel='nofollow'>http://www.ombwatch.org/files/budget/OMB_Watch-HR1_Policy_Riders.pdf</a> This is a partial list of some of the cuts the Republicans want to enact. Can't really blame the shutdown on the Obama.

Buster W.

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 5:47 p.m.

So where's the President this week? In NY working on his re-election campaign with Sharpton. What a great leader!

Macabre Sunset

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 5:25 p.m.

You forget, though, that the media is in the DNC's pocket. There will be plenty of drama.

Technojunkie

Fri, Apr 8, 2011 : 5:22 p.m.

Given the lack of drama after President Clinton blocked the Republican-passed budget back in the '90s, I'm not expecting much this time other than the usual bloviating.