With President Jimmy Carter watching, Benjamin Civiletti is sworn in by Chief Justice Warren Burger as U.S. attorney general on Aug. 16, 1979. The following year, Civiletti issued a legal opinion saying that federal work cannot go on until Congress agrees to pay for it. AP hide caption

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From 'Morning Edition': NPR's Scott Horsley on the history of shutdowns
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President Clinton shakes hands with House Speaker Newt Gingrich prior to giving his State of the Union address in January 1996. Denis Paquin/AP hide caption

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An empty Senate meeting room, just outside the chamber, is seen Monday in Washington. Only a week remains for Congress to pass a funding bill to avoid a government shutdown. J. Scott Applewhite/AP hide caption

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