Shutdown driving debate over role of government

WASHINGTON (AP) - The lingering federal shutdown is a transforming a musty debate over the role of government in America into a coast-to-coast, prime-time reality show.

Landmarks are closed, paychecks are delayed and workers are furloughed.

And Americans are drawing dueling lessons from the rippling effects of the partial shutdown.

Some think the disruptions show that the feds are way too involved in people's lives.

Others say the disruptions show that the government does a lot of vital things - and people take them for granted.

There's a messaging war underway to see which viewpoint will prevail.

But any shift in public opinion may depend on how much - or how little - people are personally affected as the shutdown drags on.

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