The government shutdown began Dec. 22 following Democratic opposition to President Donald Trump’s attempts to get funding for a wall at the border with Mexico.
The shutdown is now at 17 days — four fewer days than the longest shutdown since 1980, according to The Washington Post.
The shutdown has affected nine out of 15 departments including Homeland Security, Justice, State and Treasury, as well as agencies such as the Environmental Protection Agency and NASA. Mail delivery and law enforcement is still operational, according to The New York Times, although tens of thousands of law enforcement personnel are working without pay.
Of the 800,000 employees affected, “less than half are on unpaid leave, while more than half are working without pay”, according to The New York Times. Those who work can expect compensation after funding is restored.
People around the Twin Counties reacted to the issue Sunday.
Susan Labuff, of Catskill, does not approve of the shutdown, she said.
“They need to stop playing political games and get down to business and resolve this issue,” she said. “They are not working for the good of the people.”
Labuff sees the politicians’ behavior as a campaign strategy, she said.
“They are just looking for their own political gain,” she said.
Karolina Perino, of Earlton, does not support the shutdown or the wall.
“If there is a compromise, it should not include funding for a wall,” she said.
Shutdowns have been a long-term issue, Perino said.
“It’s something they hold over our heads and they’re always bargaining over one issue or another,” she said.
Bob Sliney, of New Milford, Connecticut, was walking his dog on Warren Street on Sunday.
“I agree with the Democratic position that elements of the government [not involved in the wall issue] should not be involved in the shutdown,” Sliney said.
The issue is also more complex, he added.
“It’s not just a wall — it’s about immigration,” Sliney said. “Republicans and Democrats need to sit down and discuss this issue.”
Mark Cancilla, of Pittsfield, Massachusetts, was visiting Hudson with his wife Elaine.
“Unfortunately, the government is never going to get together and make a decision without making people suffer,” he said.
“It’s a mess,” Elaine Cancilla agreed. “I hope the greatest democracy in the world isn’t going to be ruined by this bipartisan behavior. We ought to get over ourselves.”