The government has been shut down for over four weeks, rendering state-run institutions and nearly 800,000 people across the country to go this month without an income.

According to Allan Saxe, political science associate professor, the cause of the shut down is because of Congress and the White House’s disagreement on some budget items, primarily funding the proposed U.S.-Mexico border wall.

Likely very little are affected by the shutdown, Saxe said in an email. Student aid is still forthcoming and though some families are affected, all will receive back pay. When the government shuts down, only nonessential workers are temporarily laid off.

“[It’s a] terrible inconvenience, but not a national tragedy,” Saxe said.

Areas of research such as Health and Human Services, and the Department of Defense are not affected because they are funded by agencies with full appropriations, said Duane Dimos, vice president for research.

The majority of UTA’s research funding is through federal funding, Dimos said.

“One of the biggest funding agencies for us that we do worry about, that is not funded, is the National Science Foundation, so, you know, we’re paying close attention,” Dimos said.

Projects that have already been approved continue forward with no change or effects.

The worst this shutdown can do is cause delays in new projects being reviewed and cause funding to take a while to come through, Dimos said. For example, there may have been a student ready to begin their final research project and now they can’t.

“We all feel badly about the fact that there are things that the government does that we all expect it to do, and the people that do those things are either sitting at home not being paid, or they’re being, you know, asked to continue working without being paid,” Dimos said. “As citizens, we all feel badly about that.”

Political science professor Thomas Marshall said the laid-off 800,000 federal employees have non-critical status, and some are being told to come in to work without pay, which strikes him as an odd business practice.

“Three-day shutdowns affect almost nobody in any great inconvenient sense,” Marshall said. “Once they go on for a month, which may be the longest or next to longest shutdown that we’ve had so far, people start missing paychecks.”

Other parts of the government are deemed critical and do continue to receive payment, Marshall said.

“Members of congress are not directly and immediately affected in any obvious way; they’ve got other sources of cash,” he said. “And if it went on another 30 days, would any of them starve? I doubt it.”

Building the wall is President Donald Trump’s priority and an important issue to many Democrats who have differing views on the matter, therefore, there is an inability to come to an agreement, Marshall said.

He said the U.S. is in the early days of the upcoming 2020 election, and because Trump made the campaign promise of building the wall in the 2016 election, he’s probably feeling pressure to follow through. Democrats don’t feel the same way, Marshall said.

“Both sides are kind of having a pissing match over it,” Marshall said.

The shutdown is an opportunity for the Democratic party to bargain, Marshall said.

Marshall said federal employees and their families will begin to feel the pinch of the shutdown within the next 30 days, and the pressure is on for it to end.

“We’ll see if a compromise can be reached on this one,” Dimos said. “It’s going to be challenging.”


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(13) comments


The real question is why does the government employ nonessential workers??? This is a great time to clean the fraud, waste, and abuse off theAmerican taxpayer's back


Republicans, Democrats up until 2016, DHS, border patrol, etc have all supported increased border security including a wall. Now that Trump wants the wall the democrats are all the sudden opposed to it, calling "immoral" while putting walls across their own homes lol. Hopefully democrats come to the negotiating table and start putting Americans first.


Who ever wrote this article should be the only reporter on politics moving forward. For the sake of ShortHorn reputation


Why? Because it pushes the "both sides" fallacy instead of putting the blame squarely on Trumps tiny, slumped shoulders where it belongs?


It is both sides fault, it always is. Your inability to see it is due to your own hatred.


No, it's really not. Insisting that it is is nothing but intellectual laziness.


It objectively is, pretending that it isn't is intellectually dishonest. An offer was given, democrats wont even pretend to negotiate. Is what it is.


And Republicans still don't care. The wall isn't happening. It's a wasteful, by all accounts ineffective, vanity project that at this point is meant to do nothing but stroke Trump's ego because he simply cannot handle being told the word "no". If he truly wanted to discuss border security, Democrats would be completely up for it. But he doesn't, because that isn't what this is about; it's never been what this is about.

Republicans controlled the government for two years; if they really wanted a wall they could have paid for it then. But they didn't, because even they know it is a horrible, stupid, wasteful idea. But instead of making that point, all they did was wait for Democrats to get elected to bring it up so they could make it seem like it was Democrats obstructing the process all so that they could make points with their clueless base. It goes completely in line with everything else Republicans do: lie, deceive, sabotage the government at every turn, and then complain about how badly the government works. It's absolutely pathetic.


I’m going to be dead honest with you bro beans. Trump will win the 2020 election. Just giving you a warning


If you really think that you're delusional.


98 percent chance for Hillary


Democrats don't care either, they were offered a deal and they declined it. Like it or not, this is the fault of both parties. Democrats up until 2016 argued for a wall as well, the only reason they are arguing against it now is because Trump wants it. If Democrats cared, they would negotiate. They don't want to negotiate so they stubbornly sit on their hands.

Democrats are just as big of liars, deceivers, obstructionists, etc. It is pathetic.


Also whats wasteful is all the taxpayer money being spent on illegal immigrants not supposed to be here in the first place.

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