Government PLANS To Be Stupid
Y'know, If I had been a government IT guy, and there was even a CHANCE that there would be a budget stalemate, I would have looked around and asked "If the government were to "shut down" and go on autopilot, what will go SERIOUSLY wrong in the next month?" Security certs are something that could EASILY have been renewed for another year well in advance.
Pure incompetence. Or malice; take your pick.