News Releases

Congress has already successfully funded 75 percent of the federal government through 2019, including the Department of Defense, as well as the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Labor.

I am actively working with my colleagues and the president to reopen the government and secure our borders, and I believe my colleagues can and should come to a bipartisan consensus on this national security issue, while keeping the government fully operational.

Below are a few common Q&As and resources regarding federal services during a partial government shutdown. Please don’t hesitate to contact my office or visit my website for additional details.

Q: Will I still receive my Social Security checks?
Yes. Social Security checks will continue to be mailed out.

Q: Will I still be able to send/receive mail?
Yes. The United States Postal Service has its own revenue stream outside of the federal government.

Q: Will air travel be affected?
Air traffic controllers, TSA and Customs officers will continue working, so air traffic should be largely unaffected.

Q: Will Smithsonian Museums remain open?
A: As of Wednesday, January 2, 2019, Smithsonian Museums in Washington, D.C., as well as the National Zoo will be closed until the government reopens.

Q: Will I still receive my Medicare checks?
A: Yes. Medicare checks will continue to be mailed out.

Q: Will I still get my food stamps?
A: Yes. Food stamps will continue to be distributed.

Q: Will National Parks be open?
A: War memorials and open air parks will remain open to the public. Many national parks, refuges and other public lands will try to allow limited park access wherever possible. 

For more information regarding national parks during a shutdown, please visit the United States Department of Interior.

Q: What will happen to our military?
A: Active-duty military will continue in a normal duty status and global military operations will continue. Active duty members of the military are exempt from shutdown furloughs. 

Q: Will VA facilities be affected?
A: The Department of Veterans Affairs’ funding has already appropriated for FY2019, so veterans hospitals will maintain routine operations. Revenue streams for veteran disability pay and GI Bill benefits are separate from the annual appropriations bills, so this pay will be unaffected.

For more information regarding veterans services during a shutdown, please visit the United States Department of Veterans Affairs website.

Q: Will military contractors be affected?
A: No.

For more information regarding military policies during a shutdown, please visit the United States Department of Defense website.

Q: Can non-furloughed employees perform other work?
A: If the non-furlough ("excepted') support function can be performed in less than an entire day, the employee is required to resume furlough status after completing the function.

However, there may be cases in which an employee is required to perform this "excepted" support function intermittently throughout the course of the day, and the intervals in between are too short to enable the employee to be furloughed and then recalled in time to perform the function. In such cases, the employee may remain at work, and may perform non-"excepted" functions during these intervals.

For more information regarding federal employees during a shutdown, please visit the Office of Management and Budget.