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Published: Wednesday, Oct. 9 2013 12:00 a.m. MDT

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Roland Kayser
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Let's say we are back in 1983. We have a Republican president, Ronald Reagan. We also have a Republican Senate. The House of Representatives is controlled by the Democrats. Now during Reagan's presidency, the debt limit had to be raised eighteen times. Let's say that during one of those times, the Democratic House said, " Mr. President, we will only raise the debt ceiling if you rescind all of your tax cuts."

What would Reagan have done? Would he have negotiated? Would he have offered to scrap half of his tax cuts in exchange for a debt limit increase? I'm quite sure the answer would be no. What the current Republicans are demanding amounts to exactly the same thing.

No president should ever give in to such extortionary demands. It would completely undermine our constitutional system of government if a minority party can demand action that they are unable to achieve by either legislative means of through elections.

Had Mitt Romney won and the Republicans won control of the Senate, they could repeal Obamacare. They didn't and they have no right to nullify our last two presidential elections.

KJB1
Eugene, OR

But Democrats have compromised; they've agreed to lock the sequestration cuts into the budget. The Republicans are the ones who have refused to meet with the Democrats about long-term planning for the future. The Republicans are the ones who refused to fund the government and are threatening to sabotage our economy because they don't have the votes to stop legally enacted legislation from going into effect. The Republicans are the ones who currently flailing and are more interested in getting "points on the board" than in the stability of this country.

Obama was reelected last year and the Democrats gained seats in the Senate. Instead of accepting that and working in good faith, Republicans are throwing a tantrum.

Yes, I will blame Republicans. This mess is all on them.

Ernest T. Bass
Bountiful, UT

What is there to compromise?
One side prefers uninsured and therefore no access to healthcare for millions of Americans. How do you compromise on that?

JoeBlow
Far East USA, SC

Lynn,

The debt ceiling is about allocating money to pay the bills that congress voted on previously.
It has nothing to do with new spending, the ACA, abortion, gay marriage or tax rates.

It is about paying the bills that were racked up previously. The GOP controlled house voted to spend every dollar that we spend. Now its time to pay the bill.

It is NOT a tool to to change laws that you don't like.

Open Minded Mormon
Everett, 00

Parrots the letter writer from "talk radio".

Get out of your little bubble world, and read the polls.

Congress now has a 5% approval rating --
and 68% of AMERICA blames the Republicans [as they should].

Sending a letter into the DN editor is like preaching to the choir.

Makid
Kearns, UT

Democrats tried at least 19 times since March to compromise with the Republicans. Democrats passed a budget in March.

Republicans have blocked each attempt to negotiate a budget. The whole shutdown could have been avoided if Republicans would have negotiated in good faith over the last 6 months.

People keep saying Republicans have compromised and negotiated.

A true negotiation is both parties meeting with a list of everything they want, over the course of the negotiations, items are dwindled down to a list that both sides will be okay with.

Currently, Democrats only want a funded government. That is it. Republicans want that too, as long as they get something for it. That isn't negotiating, that is extortion.

Democrats can't negotiate with Republicans in this setting because it would mean that anytime a party wants anything, just shut down the government, ruin the economy just to get their way.

That is not how this country was formed and it isn't how the country should operate. It is also why we don't negotiate with terrorists. Once they get their way, they will escalate their tactics to get more of what they want each time. That's bad for everyone.

RanchHand
Huntsville, UT

Lynn, the entire ACA is a compromise. Republicans are being blamed because they're responsible. Isn't personal responsibility the greatest Republican tenet? It's time to own it now.

Blue
Salt Lake City, UT

Lynn, you've got to get your news from more reliable sources than FOX.

Look - Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, and other Tea Party leaders were writing letters and making speeches last summer in which they spoke gleefully about shutting down the government.

The "clean" budget resolution that the Speaker Boehner refuses to allow to come to a vote is for funding levels that satisfy Paul Ryan's budget proposals from the 2012 election.

Republicans lost in 2012. They lost the White House, they lost seats in the Senate, they lost seats in the House, and their suit against the Affordable Care Act lost before the US Supreme Court.

But the Tea Party wing of the GOP refuses to accept the message. They're basically holding a gun to America's head and saying, "Undo the election of 2012 or we pull the trigger."

The Republicans most certainly _are_ the reason the government is shut down.

ECR
Burke, VA

I see I'm late to the table today. Every valid point I would make has already been made by the writers above.

Blue - in this case even Fox News is telling the Republicans they are foolish for causing the shutdown because the should be celebrating the changes that the President and Democrats have already agreed to - continuation of the sequestration cuts. That's how bad things are right now - even Fox News agrees with the liberal side of the aisle. I fear that if the Republicans don't wake up we will end up with a one party system and that's never a good idea.

RanchHand
Huntsville, UT

Democratic Senators requested 19 times that the Senate go to conference. Republican Senators blocked it 19 times.

Who is responsible for the shutdown?

Kent C. DeForrest
Provo, UT

Absolutely ridiculous letter. The Republicans couldn't get their way through legislation, through a Supreme Court challenge (with a conservative-leaning Court, I might add), and through elections. So they have resorted to extortion. This crisis is 100 percent Republican caused. Any other interpretation of the situation is sheer fantasy.

Truthseeker
SLO, CA

Boehner admitted on "This Week" he and Harry Reid had an agreement on the budget that was lower than what the Senate wanted, but then House Republicans decided they wanted to take aim against Obamacare.

Oama delayed the employer mandate to accomodate businesses. But there are many uninsured people, some who have serious illnesses, who've been waiting for the day they could get insurance, so it would be improper for Obama to delay their ability to do so.

Mike in Sandy
Sandy, UT

How incredibly narrow- minded and tunnel-visioned.

Mike in Sandy
Sandy, UT

I hear radio spots for Valvoline---it claims to "remove performance robbing gunk" from your engine.

Perhaps they should pour some onto the GOP.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

Do we, the people, want Congress to represent us or do we want Congress to represent the President and Harry Reid? The People, 59% of them, told the House that they didn't want ObamaCare. The House ignored the people. The States told the Senate that they didn't want ObamaCare. The Senate ignored the States. Bribes were offered, i.e., the famous "Louisiana purchase" and the messing around with Nebraska. When that still wasn't enough, unions received exemptions. When that still wasn't enough, the Senate changed the rules for that one bill. Not one Republican in either the House or the Sentate voted for ObamaCare.

Everything about that process stinks to high heaven.

Now, that many Democrats have been fired, the House is listening to the People. The People still don't want ObamaCare. The House's bill represents the will of the people. The Senate is still dictating to the States instead of serving them. Obama is having a meltdown because the People had stood up to him. He's trying to hurt us by striking out at WIC and at WWII vets. Could anyone possible do anything more devious than that?

atl134
Salt Lake City, UT

Democrats compromised by agreeing to all of the House funding levels set for the rest of the budget (which is a lower discretionary spending amount than even the original Paul Ryan budget had).

ECR
Burke, VA

Mike Richards - I'm being admittedly facetious in this scenario but here's what it sounds like your saying. You find honor and credibility in a group of like minded legislators scheming together to not give the newly elected president one vote in favor of his key legislation. Despite the fact that those same legislators and their supporters from the think tanks and other such organizations previously supported, and in fact, were the creators of such ideas until this president was elected. Gosh, one of them even implemented almost the same program in the state over which he governed, and then made an about face and said he would destroy or do away with that legislation as his first priority if he were elected president. He lost, by the way. So you believe that it is that group of legislators who are acting honorably and the president, who has made compromises every day that he has been in office to appease those legislators and keep the country running, is the bad guy.

Yesterday John Boehner, and presumably the rest of the House Republicans, changed the subject from Obamacare to the deficit. What are your thoughts about that?

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Roland
The previous 2 elections were not just about healthcare. Assuming the President winning means Congress or the SC can do nothing about that one thing he supports is bogus logic.

Republicans also won elections (by bigger margins than Obama). So by your logic their constituents didn't want ObamaCare. So they are obligated to represent their constituents and oppose ObamaCare (exactly what they are doing).

There's nothing that says Congress or the Court can't oppose something the President wants, or change existing law. I can give you dozens of examples if you need them.

------

Your Reagan example is a great example. Search "Government shutdown in the united states" in Wikipedia. You will see 8 government shutdowns during Reagan Admin. The first one was because Reagan pledged to veto the budget if Democrat Senate failed to include at least HALF of his budget cuts. They didnt.

So Reagan was willing to accept HALF of what he wanted. Would Obama accept HALF of what HE wants on Obamacare? NO.

Democrats wouldn't even give Reagan HALF of what he wanted then... but today you expect Republicans to give Obama 100% of what he wants or Republicans are 100% to blame?

Hemlock
Salt Lake City, UT

The supine major news media is Mr. Obama's 12th man. They ignore the issues of burgeoning debt, outlandishly expensive medical care, entitlement reform and define legislative "compromise" as an act of Republican obeisance to the White House.

annes
albuquerque, NM

Second submit try:
The so-called "clean CR" is the product of a negotiation between the Senate and House, the agreement was made during the summer 2013. Obviously, the HOUSE majority leaders negotiated in bad faith.

In the NEGOTIATION, the Senate agreed that the "clean CR" would include sequestration cuts, it's a very bad budget for the democrats but they agreed to avert a government shutdown. The House agreed that this version WOULD BE PASSED WITHOUT A SHUT DOWN OF THE GOVERNMENT. Both agreed it would last through Dec 15, 2013. The intervening time was to be used to negotiate the budget for the rest of FY 2014.

The HOUSE has not followed through on their agreement. Obviously. To the public delight of the tea party. Some people believe this was their objective all along. For these reasons, I think that the Senate should not be held to the austerity budget represented by the so-called "clean CR". The President's budget should be restored to the CR, since the HOUSE did not follow through with the original negotiation in good faith.

Why should the democrats negotiate more and more and more, when the republicans don't honored their agreements? Would you?

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