Yes, this shutdown is the first since late 1995. That one lasted 21 days, into 1996.
12. How many government workers could be furloughed?
Most of the 3.3 million government workers are deemed "essential" -- they'll keep working. But more than 800,000 government employees will sit at home, according to a CNN analysis.
Many of the furloughed federal workers are supposed to be out of their offices within four hours of the start of business Tuesday.
13. What will this do to the economy?
Depends on how long it lasts. If it's just a few days, the hit might not be severe. But the total economic impact is likely to be at least 10 times greater than the simple calculation of lost wages of federal workers, said Brian Kessler, economist with Moody's Analytics. His firm estimates that a three- to four-week shutdown would cost the economy about $55 billion.
14. How will this affect me?
In ways big and small. The mail will continue to come. The military will continue to fight. And Social Security checks will continue to be paid.
But if you need a federal loan to buy a house, you'll have to wait. If you want a gun permit or a passport, that won't happen anytime soon.
15. Will a shutdown kill Obamacare?
No. Most of the money for Obamacare comes from new taxes and fees, as well as from cost cuts to other programs like Medicare and other types of funding that will continue despite the government shutdown.
16. Will the president get paid during a shutdown?
Yes. His salary -- $400,000 -- is considered mandatory spending. It won't be affected.
17. What about House and Senate members?
They'll keep drawing checks, too. The 27th Amendment prevents any Congress from changing its own pay.
18. What does John Q. Public think of all this?
A CNN/ORC International poll that came out Monday found that 46% will blame congressional Republicans if the government closes its doors, with 36% saying the president would be more responsible and 13% pointing fingers at both.
19. Isn't there another matter -- the debt ceiling?
Ah yes, that's the next battle brewing. Remember that time when you maxed out your credit card? That's what the debt limit is all about. The U.S. is on the verge of maxing out its $16.699 trillion credit card. And the president must ask Congress to raise the country's credit limit.
But the debt ceiling debacle won't come to a head until October 17. Perhaps it's best to deal with one showdown at a time.
20. Can Congress agree on anything?
The House and Senate did agree on one thing. They finalized legislation Monday to keep paying troops in the event of a shutdown.