What is the shutdown all about?
In a word, money. The US financial year ends at midnight on Monday. Under US law a new bill to approve funding for the next financial year is required, which must have been approved by the House of Representatives, and the Senate, and the president. This has yet to happen.
In two words, politics and Obamacare. The core problem is that the Republican party controls the lower house, or House of Representatives, while the Democrats control the Senate.
It’s a bit like the King having to come to Parliament for supply, isn’t it? And he needs the agreement of the Commons. I’m pretty sure lefties regard that as one of the glorious steps to a brighter Whiggish future. Seems odd that it’s not so regarded when the same system reduces the cash they get to play with.