U.S. officials have begun notifying federal workers that the government may shut down on Saturday at midnight. During a shutdown, millions of federal workers will stop being paid, including members of the military and air traffic controllers. Millions of recipients of government aid may also lose access to benefits, including 7 million women and children who rely on the WIC program — the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children. While the Senate is working on a bipartisan proposal to keep the government open, no progress appears to have been made in the House, where far-right lawmakers are in a battle with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy. The House passed a number of spending bills on Thursday night, including a $300 million military aid package for Ukraine, but the bills will not avert a shutdown. This comes as The Washington Post reports a group of far-right Republicans are plotting to remove McCarthy as speaker as soon as next week.
President Biden addressed the possible shutdown in a speech in Arizona at an event honoring the late Republican Senator John McCain.
President Joe Biden: “Extremists in Congress — more determined to shut down the government, to burn the place down, than to let the people’s business be done.”