Turn on the news and you're bound to hear about the looming treat of a government shutdown. Republicans and Democrats are both warning of the impending disasters that lie ahead if they don't reach a deal by the end of this week.
So is the threat real, or is it much ado about nothing?
In a shutdown, it all comes down to essential vs. non-essential. This means that all "non-essential" federal government employees will be furloughed, i.e. forced to take an unpaid leave of absence. (However, a resolution to retroactively pay the furloughed employees is usually passed after Congress reaches a deal, so the unpaid leave of absence will likely end up being a paid vacation for almost 1 million government workers.)
What is considered essential?
- The military and all federal law enforcement agencies
- The postal service
- Social Security
- Food stamps
And what doesn't make the cut?
- National parks
- National museums
- National monuments
- National Institute of Health's "experimental treatments"
- Passport applications
Watch the video above to hear Sara Gonzales break down what actually happens during a government shutdown or read about it here.
To see more from Sara, visit the “Contributors” channel on TheBlaze.