Yet Another Government Shutdown Looms Ahead of Holidays

In what has become something of a holiday season tradition, federal agencies are again passing word to their employees that a government shutdown is possible if, within the next three days, President Donald Trump and the U.S. Congress cannot agree on a spending package to fund various key functions of the federal government.

Among the agencies threatened by the shutdown are the Departments of Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, State, Interior, Agriculture, Treasury, Commerce, Homeland Security, and Justice.

Congress has until Friday to pass the bill funding the agencies, and the measure would then need to be signed by the president, a seemingly simple process complicated by disagreements between the president and Congress over precisely how much money should be spent on the president's proposed physical wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

The president has proposed that $5 billion be allocated toward the actual physical wall, while Democrats have proposed spending $1.3 billion on increasing border security.

Should the two parties be unable to find a happy middle-ground between the two proposals, roughly 345,000 federal employees face furlough.

For 36 of the last 40 years, Congress has used Continuing Resolutions to fund the government between full budget agreements.

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