The U.S. Department of Agriculture has turned off its entire website in response to the government shutdown, leaving farmers, reporters and others with no way to access any of the agency’s information online.
A visit to usda.gov sends readers to a “funding lapse” page that reads, “Due to the lapse in federal government funding, this website is not available. After funding has been restored, please allow some time for this website to become available again.”
USDA’s total website shutdown goes far beyond the response of other federal agencies, and seems to be part of an effort to make people feel the effects of the shutdown. Thursday morning calls to USDA’s press office seeking an explanation were not answered.
The USDA page gives readers no way to enter the department’s main website and access information that was posted prior to Oct. 1.
Instead, it directs readers to three other sites, including a White House page, that describe the Obama administration’s response to Congress’s failure to pass a 2014 appropriations bill.
Other agencies say their sites won’t be updated, but allow visitors to access older information.