As the partial government shutdown enters its 26th day, President Trump has ordered thousands of furloughed government workers to return to work – knowing that they will not be paid until after the shutdown ends – to restart government functions like inspecting planes, auctioning off offshore drilling rights, monitoring food safety and issuing tax refunds.
A Trump Administration contingency plan released Tuesday calls for 46,000 worker to return to work, joining the ranks of 420,000 “essential” federal workers who have been working through the shutdown (though they have been forgoing their paychecks at least until the funding is approved).
But according to Bloomberg, critics of the administration are arguing that ordering some employees to return to work constitutes a violation of the 1870 Antideficiency Act, which prohibits federal agencies from spending money that hasn’t been explicitly appropriated by Congress unless it’s literally a matter of life and death.
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