Time for Trump to end shutdown

Something’s got to give.

It’s time for President Donald Trump and the Republican Party and the Democratic Party to put an end to this shutdown. While both sides certainly feel they’re in the right and vindicated by their actions, one of them is going to have to give ground, back down if you must, come to a truce, so workers can get back to working. This has turned into a childish standoff at times, between Trump and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Don’t give the State of the Union speech.

Yes, I will.

No, you won’t.

That military plane you were planning to use for an overseas trip? Forget it.

You leaked secrets of our trip, so we’re canceling it.

You’re out of touch with the people.

You’re the reason the Democrats have been so racial, to the far left.

And so it goes.

The victims, as we know, of what some would describe as political grandstanding, are the 800,000 government workers. Many of them are struggling economically. Some are turning to food banks and others for help.

While there is hope for a resolution, the latest actions are disheartening.

Thursday, the Senate first rejected a Republican plan reopening government through September and giving Trump the $5.7 billion he’s demanded for building segments of that wall, a project that he’d long promised Mexico would finance. The 51-47 vote for the measure fell nine shy of the 60 votes needed to succeed, the Associated Press reported.

Minutes later, senators voted 52-44 for a Democratic alternative that sought to open padlocked agencies through Feb. 8 with no wall money. That was eight votes short. It was aimed at giving bargainers time to seek an accord while getting paychecks to 800,000 beleaguered government workers who today are unpaid for a second consecutive pay period.

Sen. John Thune of South Dakota, the No. 2 Senate GOP leader, had this to say: “One way or another we’ve got to get out of this. This is no win for anybody.”

He is correct.

So, what’s the solution?

While we admire President Trump’s determination to get the funding for the wall he promised voters when he was seeking office, we believe it’s time for him to back away from that demand. He should take the high road, understand the toll this shutdown is taking on so many families, and reopen the government. We’re not saying he must abandoned his plans for a wall. We are saying, considering where we are at today, the problems the shutdown is causing, the anger that is building on both sides, the president should take a step back, withdraw the demand for $5 billion for the wall, and reunite the political parties, at least temporarily.

No, that won’t end the fight over the wall. This issue will not disappear. But it is time for cooler heads to prevail. Reopen the federal agencies, continue negotiations. The fear is, at this time, both sides have such personal pride, both sides have such political pride, they have become unwilling to move for fear of looking weak, for fear of being labeled the loser in this bruising battle, for fear supporters will turn against them. The president should take the lead here. It might hurt his pride, but he won’t lose face. People will see this as the president being a leader, realizing this situation is only going to worsen with each passing day, and he is doing what he can to find an answer to return furloughed workers to their jobs.

The House, controlled by Democrats, has made it clear it will not change. It will not give in to what its leaders say are unreasonable demands of the president.

And, public opinion is that the president is most at blame here.

A new AP-NORC poll shows most Americans see the shutdown as a major problem, and they blame Trump far more than congressional Democrats for the mess that has ensnared the lives of roughly 800,000 government workers who are going without pay, according to an AP report.

w Sixty percent of Americans say Trump bears a great deal of responsibility for the shutdown. About a third place the same amount of blame on congressional Democrats (31 percent) or Republicans (36 percent).

w Sixty-five percent of Americans, including 86 percent of Democrats, 69 percent of independents and 33 percent of Republicans, call the shutdown a major problem.

w Trump may be popular overall with Republicans, but a sizable share holds him responsible for the current situation. Almost 3 in 10 Republicans think Trump bears a great deal of responsibility, while 73 percent of his party says he’s at least partly responsible.

Trump’s demand for a $5.7 billion border wall is also unpopular, the poll found.

w Overall, 49 percent of Americans oppose the plan to build a massive wall along the Mexican border; 36 percent of the nation is in favor. Opinions fall largely along ideological lines, with 8 in 10 Democrats opposing the wall and nearly 8 in 10 Republicans supporting it.

w About 7 in 10 supporters of the wall prefer to extend the shutdown than to reach a deal without funding it, while a nearly identical number on the other side would rather the shutdown continue than provide that funding.

OK, so all that said, this president believes in getting things done. That’s why he was elected. He is not, obviously, worried about doing what is politically correct. His demand for money to build a wall to reduce illegal immigration should not come as a surprise. It is what he said he would do when he ran for office. And it’s no surprise he is moving ahead with his plans to build that wall, and it’s no surprise he’s holding firm despite the shutdown.

But it’s clear someone has to rethink their position on this matter. Someone has to give, at least a bit. We think someone with the power to do so should end this shutdown. We think that someone should be the president.

  1. james January 25, 2019 7:18 am Reply

    First, the promise was that Mexico would pay for the wall. It’s no surprise that folks don’t want their tax dollars to pay for something they were assured Mexico would pay for. We call that a “bait and switch” tactic in litigation terms. Secondly, perhaps the Dems could give the 5 plus billion to Trump with the caveat the it be used for any type of border security purposes, other than building a wall or structure and see what he does.

    1. Manawai January 25, 2019 7:15 pm Reply

      Trump’s campaign promises were no less than Obama’s broken promises on healthcare like “you can keep your doctor” and “your premiums will be lower”. The difference is that Yrump is still trying to make his promises happen and Obama reneged on his promises as soon as he got in office.

      1. james January 26, 2019 7:01 am Reply

        Obama is currently not the President. Why deflect? Because you have no response to Trump’s promise that Mexico would pay for the wall, do you?

  2. Patrick Flores January 25, 2019 7:18 am Reply

    In comment to the article entitled ” something’s got to give”, I agree that the good of the nation needs to be the priority as opposed to the good of the political party. No member of congress nor the president should be exempt from attending to these matters until resolution is achieved. As for blame, we each and all have an opinion but what matters more is functioning of OUR government for the best interest of it’s citizenry. This is my take on this, Patrick H Flores, Kapa’ a.

  3. Ginger Doll January 25, 2019 8:35 am Reply

    When did this crisis start? Was it before the mid-term election when the immigrant caravan was 1,000 miles away? No, but Trump tried to use toward Republican advantage to hold congressional majorities. Unfortunately, voters soured on two-years of Trump’s tactics and voted Democratic.
    Held responsible by the press for the Republican defeat, he looked to change the subject and stop the negative press coverage.
    Trump took decisive action and fired the Secretary of Defense. The outrage in Washington and around the globe was deafening. Even Republican leaders were questioning the decision and some very critical.
    A man who seems to thrive on conflict, Trump escalated things further. In a White House meeting with Shurmer and Pelosi in front of network cameras, he said he would shut the government down if Congress would not approve $5 billion for the wall. Most important, he would take credit for the shutdown.
    In the short term, his strategy worked. Nobody was talking about firing the Defense Secretary.
    In the long tern, it’s Trump’s shutdown. He owns it.

  4. Jose Bulatao January 25, 2019 9:13 am Reply

    With this topic, the extent to which opposing opinions are at odds with each other, the complexities of being able to “smooth out the wrinkles”, may be simply IMPOSSIBLE. So, why not “tackle the problem” by coming up with alternative approaches…considering collaborative endeavors…..multi-leveled coordination of tasks and responsibilities, etc. As the saying goes, isn’t there more than just one way to “skin a cat”?

  5. Ginger Doll January 25, 2019 9:51 am Reply

    Roger Stone indicted.
    Trump Administration getting unwanted press questions and bad publicity.
    President Trump acts decisively. Makes announcement that government shutdown will end.
    It works. Roger Stone questions pushed aside. Media now focusing attention on government reopening and workers getting paid.

  6. Craig Millett January 25, 2019 10:00 am Reply

    All of Trump’s actions, including this foolish wall benefit most the desires of his good friend Putin. When will you in the media stand back from all the noise and distraction and just report this most obvious fact?

  7. Sam January 25, 2019 10:10 am Reply

    Well said. I to believe it should be Trump that ends this shutdown. If there is another shutdown the person’s keeping it closed should have no pay, not the people who depend on thier jobs to survive. Most pay check by pay check. I wonder if the shut down would still be in effect if these leaders lost their pay? They are all so stinking rich it might not effect them as it does us simple civilians.

  8. Lumahai January 25, 2019 10:15 am Reply

    I am not a Trump fan, but I hope he get’s credit for opening the government today. It’s not about his base. He believes in border security. Nancy and Chuck don’t care about anything but the blame game and political power. Time for Term Limits.

  9. gordon oswald January 25, 2019 11:05 am Reply

    Well Lumahai thank you for being a voice of reason in a sea of idiocy. And by the way “James” President Trump is solely responsible for the new Trade deals with Mexico and Canada. As such, as soon as the agreement begins MEXICO WILL HAVE AGREED TO PAY FOR THE WALL (even though they won’t want you to connect the money directly)! The United States will save and receive several Billion Dollars a year from Mexico because of our President and his superior business skills. Over the 16 years of the Agreement, the United States will have more than enough to pay for 10 walls! Stop watching fake news people, even if it says what you want to hear it doesn’t make it the truth!

    1. james January 26, 2019 7:07 am Reply

      Check your facts. First, Trump promised Mexico would pay for the wall up front, with cash. Multiple clips of him saying that exact thing. Secondly, the trade agreement will NOT provide money for a wall.https://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2019/jan/04/donald-trump/no-usmca-trade-deal-wont-pay-border-wall-despite-d/ Don’t believe everything you hear on Fox or Infowars. Do your research before writing comments.

    2. LTEreader January 26, 2019 11:03 am Reply

      @ gordon oswald:

      “Can USMCA Pay for the Wall? To be clear, there is nothing in the USMCA spelling out that Mexico will pay for any border wall.”
      “Ultimately USMCA is very similar to NAFTA, and so we shouldn’t expect any substantial economic shifts from the new agreement,”

      And more > from those in the know:

      You need to start exploring ‘FACT CHECK’ sites. They’re way more informative than Trumps Twitters! lol.

      @ Manawai
      I kept the same Dr. and my premium decreased = promise fulfilled for some of us.

      1. manawai February 1, 2019 10:09 pm Reply

        You must be one of the lucky few. My HMSA premiums went up 80%! We tried for months to sign my fulltime employee up for Obamacare, but their website kept failing. When we finally got in HMSA had withdrawn its Obamacare small business plan so Kaiser was the only Obamacare small business plan in Hawaii and my employee’s clinic/doctor here on Kauai don’t participate with Kaiser. That’s a broken promise by our former President. The truth is that ALL politicians spread BS during their campaigns and only fools believe them.

        1. LTEreader February 4, 2019 10:32 am Reply

          @manawai…why would you not go back into the site and edit from business to individual? I doubt it matters as long as you’re paying your employees premium per State law. Your employee will have to declare the subsidy (if any) on their tax return though. ACA is based on income & once completed online there’s plenty of HMSA (and other carrier) options with Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Bronze plans, along with detailed explanations of what each covers, co-pays, annual out of pocket expense, and annual deductible. They’re available 24/7 on the toll free number, always answer, and are knowledgeable and pleasant.
          UHC (United Health Care) is good too, and they offer a business plan. Have you contacted them directly for a quote for all of you? Also accepted by the majority of clinics/doctors here.
          *And yes, the website failed when it was initially launched, but was fixed long ago too. I’ve had no issues with it for years.

  10. Gary Eyring January 25, 2019 6:09 pm Reply

    Legislation is needed that requires any future federal government shutdown include the immediate suspension of salaries AND benefits to all members of the legislative and executive branches. That may not impact most of the fat cats at the top but at least inflict some pain on staff members who may in turn exert influence on their bosses. So, Tulsi, step up and write that legislation.

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