Wednesday Is a National Day of Mourning for George H.W. Bush. Here’s What Will Be Closed
A National Day of Mourning will be observed Wednesday to honor former President George H.W. Bush, which means a planned funeral service will impact Americans beyond those in attendance at Washington National Cathedral.
President Donald Trump declared the day of mourning for Bush, who died last Friday at the age of 94.
But what does this mean and who will be affected?
For those in the Washington, D.C. area, the primary impact will be on commuters, as there will be numerous road closures due to the motorcade. Traffic delays are expected and some public transportation may be affected as well.
Most of the federal government will be closed, with the exception of those that an agency deems necessary for “reasons of national security, defense, or other essential public business,” according to guidance from the Office of Personnel Management. Federal employees will be excused without it affecting their pay.
Congress, too, will be affected. The House canceled all votes for the week, while the Senate has postponed planned votes. In Maryland and Texas, Govs. Larry Hogan and Greg Abbott respectively announced that state government agencies and offices will be closed on Wednesday to honor the former president. The governor of Maine, Paul LePage similarly announced that non-essential state offices will be closed on Wednesday.
The U.S. Postal Service will not deliver regular mail on Wednesday, and post offices will be closed. Some federal banks and courts will be closed too, while the Supreme Court will postpone arguments for the day.
But it’s not just government offices and services that will observe the day of mourning. Stock markets will be closed on Wednesday, including the New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq. The Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association also recommended that fixed-income cash markets close, while CME Group announced that U.S.-based equity and interest rate futures and options products would not be open for trading on Wednesday.
Even the Recording Academy announced that it will move the announcement of this year’s Grammy nominees from Wednesday to Friday so as to not interfere with Bush’s funeral.
And observance of the national day of mourning is not limited to the U.S. either. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that all flags at federal buildings in Canada—and Canadian offices in the US—will be lowered to honor the former president.