rediff.com

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 
Rediff.com  » Business » US government shuts down as talks fail

US government shuts down as talks fail

Last updated on: October 01, 2013 10:04 IST

The US government on Tuesday shut down – the first time since 1995-96 - as the Republican and the Democrats failed to reach an agreement on spending and budget mainly due to their differences over the healthcare reforms, which is popular as Obamacare.

With neither side blinking, despite last minute hectic efforts from both side, the White House immediately ordered the federal government agencies to begin shutting down, furloughing thousands of workers and curtailing some services for the first time in nearly 18 years.

"Congress has not fulfilled its responsibility. It has failed to pass a budget and, as a result, much of our government must now shut down until Congress funds it again," Obama said in a video message to the armed services shortly after the shutdown came into effect.

"The threats to our national security have not changed, and we need you to be ready for any contingency. Ongoing military operations—like our efforts in Afghanistan—will continue. If you're serving in harm's way, we're going to make sure you have what you need to succeed in your missions," he said.

"Congress has passed, and I am signing into law, legislation to make sure you get your paychecks on time. And we'll continue working to address any impact this shutdown has on you and your families," Obama said.

Agencies should now execute plans for an orderly shutdown due to the absence of appropriations, the Office of Management and Budget Director Sylvia Mathews Burwell said in her guidance to the agencies directing them to execute their plans for an orderly shutdown of the Federal government.

"We urge Congress to act quickly to pass a Continuing Resolution to provide a short-term bridge that ensures sufficient time to pass a budget for the remainder of the fiscal year, and to restore the operation of critical public services and programs that will be impacted by a lapse in appropriations," the guidance said.

Lalit K Jha in Washington
© Copyright 2013 PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent.