Welcome to the shutdown


No, there was no last minute compromise on Capitol Hill. So, yes, the U.S. government is shutting down.

What happens now? Well, more than 18,000 federal employees in Minnesota are apparently expected to report to work Tuesday. The Pioneer Press reports most of those workers will show up only to be informed that they are now on an indefinite unpaid furlough.

But if you're not a federal employee, the consensus among analysts is that the shutdown will do little to disrupt your daily routine -- at least in the short term.

Essential services such as law enforcement, health care, air travel, and mail delivery will continue. Meat inspectors and prison guards would be among those deemed essential workers who would stay on the job, WCCO reports.

The Office of Personnel Management in Washington decides who is an “essential” federal worker, and more than half of federal employees are deemed essential, MinnPost notes.

But as KSTP reports, the longer a shutdown lasts the greater its impact will be. Over time it will begin to affect the processing of loans to students or small businesses, and perhaps the federal effort to flight the flu as that season kicks into high gear.

MPR reports the shutdown will also have an economic cost that's harder to quantify. The uncertainty it's creating is already affecting the markets and the plans of untold businesses. A farmer in southeastern Minnesota, for example, tells KEYC he's nervous about how a lack of USDA inspectors might affect the harvest he's undertaking. MPR has an easy-to-read FAQ with background on the shutdown and how it affects Minnesota.

As for the late night political maneuvering in Washington, House Republican critics of the nation's health care law held fast in their refusal to allow more federal borrowing unless Obamacare is defunded or delayed. The only rift in the Republican ranks was led by Minnesota's Michele Bachmann. The New York Times reported Bachmann led a conservative faction that thought the last pre-deadline offer by House Speaker John Boehner gave too much away and, if enacted, would not do enough to disable the health care law.

On the other side of the aisle, one Democratic strategist wrote an opinion piece for CNN's website congratulating his party on holding together a coalition that includes Representatives as far to the left as Minnesota's Keith Ellison.

And so the first federal government shutdown since 1996 is underway.

Shutdowns, though, have happened more recently at the state level. Why, the Washington Post informs us that as recently as 2011 a state called Minnesota went through a government shutdown and lived to tell about it.

Next Up

coronavirus, COVID-19 test

Dec. 3 COVID-19 update: 92 deaths marks MN's 2nd-highest total

The deaths continue to surge amid the worst of the pandemic so far.

mohamed amin bayle idd booking photo

2 men charged in connection to fatal shooting at Bloomington apartment complex

Shakur Freed Muhammed, 22, of Hopkins, was fatally shot Monday morning.

Screen Shot 2020-12-03 at 9.11.36 AM

Hewing Hotel finds workaround to shutdown, delivering 7-course meal to rooms

The hotel will convert guest rooms into dining rooms for three-hour reservations.

Jan and Chris Kruse

'Dateline' episode will explore Minnesota woman's unsolved murder

Jan Pigman-Kruse was fatally shot in her bed in 2015. Her husband was acquitted in the case.


Pandemic pushes need for cybersecurity, I.T. management professionals to the forefront

Enroll in a Master's course in one of these increasingly vital disciplines at the University of Wisconsin-Superior.

mike freeman

Hennepin County will eliminate bail system for certain non-violent crimes

The reform is backed by Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison.

Kirk Cousins

Coller: Vikings vs. Jags is a battle of retool vs. rebuild

Matthew Coller writes a weekly Vikings column for BMTN, with more of his work found at Purple Insider.

Screen Shot 2020-11-23 at 8.35.40 AM

More than 230,000 people have downloaded Minnesota's COVID exposure app

The more people who use the app, the more effective it is.


Despite pandemic, Life Time pushes ahead to open downtown co-working space

It was originally planned to open in the fall, but it has been pushed back to April.

shamrocks irish nook

The Nook issues plea, asks people to order from its other restaurant

Shamrocks Irish Nook has the same food as The Nook, the restaurant owners say.

Screen Shot 2020-12-02 at 9.55.05 PM

Small plane lands on northbound I-35W in Twin Cities

A large police presence is at the scene.