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Government shutdown: Reps. Reichert, DelBene react

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SEATTLE — On the first full day of the government shutdown, the parties in Washington, D.C., don’t seem any closer to a solution to the standoff.

Reps. Suzan DelBene, D-Wash., and Dave Reichert, R-Wash., have been in the thick of things in Congress for the past several days.  Each has voted with their respective political parties throughout this ordeal, and at this point neither seems willing to budge.

I spoke with them earlier Tuesday by satellite from the nation’s capital.

C.R.:  The president said this morning that it’s the Republicans holding the economy hostage to a law they don’t like — Obamacare, of course. Your response?

Reichert:  “There is an opportunity, and this has been an advantage that both parties have taken part in over the course of our history, in (the) continuing resolution and the debt ceiling votes to connect some legislation to those issues either to help us reduce the $17 trillion debt, our debts, or to at least get some language into the law that helps our economy, creates jobs, and gets this economy moving forward.”

C.R.:  Republicans have talked about wanting another year for that individual (health insurance) mandate to kick in. Why not allow it? After all, you’ve allowed businesses an extra year to follow the rules of Obamacare?

DelBene:  “Policy-making through brinksmanship is a terrible idea. We are in a situation right now, we are really damaging our economy, and, frankly, we damaged our economy days before this happened because of the concern over what would happen in the case of a shutdown. So, we should continue to move forward and look at health care as we do other pieces of legislation, see what’s working, what’s not working and continue to improve the legislation, but we should also make sure the government’s funded and, unfortunately, because there was no dialogue on a budget earlier, we’re stuck in this situation today.”

C.R.:  So you would absolutely not support any kind of Obamacare amendments to a budget solution to this?

DelBene:  “I think if you put a clean resolution on the table where you said, let’s fund the government for a period of time going forward while we are committed to working on the longer-term budget, we would have support for that, but we haven’t been allowed to even vote on that scenario.”

Reichert:  “This is an opportunity to bring both parties together to the bargaining table. If you pass a clean [Continuing Resolution] that opportunity goes away. What’s the incentive for the Democrats to come to the table and have a negotiation? Right now it’s just arrogance on their part, in my opinion, to say we’re not negotiating. And again, I know many people have heard this, but when the president says I’ll negotiate with Russia, Iran, Syria, but I’m not going to negotiate with my fellow Americans who happen to be of a different party, I think that’s wrong.”

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  • T. Sammons

    I think it’s time members of congress are forced into intensive Individual and Group Therapy, along with Conflict Resolution and Anger Management classes for the length of their term and made to PAY for it themselves.

    I also believe we should hold those key individuals who caused this shutdown; financially and personally responsible. Fined and forced to pay out their own pocket each person they have put out of work with sincere letters of amends and apology written by their own hand. Consequences. These congress members need psychiatric treatment and consequences. They are sociopaths. They have no empathy or compassion for those they are hurting. Their lack of resolve has gone on so long it is evident to all of us (especially in business management) that they are mentally and emotionally distorted, toxic, addicted to rage and addicted to their power. Their length of habitual unwillingness to resolve with one another is reminiscent of habitual violent criminals who continue to commit crimes against others; fueled greatly by their addictions. And perhaps brain damage.

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