The Shutdown: The government reopens, but what’s next?

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The Shutdown: The government reopens, but what’s next?

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As of Monday, Jan. 25, the government finally reopened after going through the longest government shutdown in our nation’s history.

Throughout the government shutdown there seemed to be no end in sight as the Democrats of the House and the Republicans of the Senate were unable to reach a compromise that would satisfy Trump’s requirements for the border wall.

However, the significant and disastrous effects of the government shutdown were already proving to be fatal on the U.S. economy. Costing the nation about 11 billion dollars, the shutdown prompted Democrats to insist that the president sign a measure to reopen the government temporarily, while Democrats and Republicans struggle to debate over the funding of the border wall. The bill quickly passed through both houses of Congress on Thursday, Jan. 24, landing on the president’s desk the next day.

President Donald Trump signed the stopgap or short-term spending bill that will temporarily open the government for only three weeks, restoring governmental functions and programs during this time. The bill also works toward paying back the many federal employees who have lost their source of income for 35 days and provides funding towards border security. However, the bill does not include any amount of funding for Trump’s southern border wall.

President Trump is still demanding the money for his border wall and insists that if no solution in Congress can be reached the government will once again be shutdown on the Feb.15 deadline.

“We really have no choice but to build a powerful wall or steel barrier,”  President Trump said. “If we don’t get a fair deal from Congress, the government will either shut down on Feb. 15, or I will use the powers afforded to me under the laws and Constitution of the United States to address this emergency.”

Even with the government being open for a week, it still seems like negotiations between the houses of Congress are falling through, as Democrats in the House, led by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, remain firm on their position of not providing any amount of funding toward the border wall. They are willing to increase funding in border security, but Trump is insisting that his border wall money is non-negotiable.

As it seems like we might be heading toward another government shutdown on Feb. 15, many do not want to go through this again, as they continue to recover from the recent shutdown. Even many Republicans are starting to feel the heat and are not enthusiastic about another shutdown, hoping they can quickly reach a compromise with Democrats over the border wall issue.

“None of us are willing to go through this again,” said Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, referring to the many Republicans who broke ranks with the GOP leadership and voted for the Democratic measure that reopened the government for three weeks. “And it’s not just a few of us. There are a great many in our conference that feel pretty strongly.”

Another government shutdown would once again mean the shutdown of many government functions, agencies and programs. It would also leave many federal employees without any income and would further damage the nation’s economy.

“Compromise is not a dirty word,” said Republican Sen. Susan Collins from Maine. “It is not a sign of weakness. It is a sign of strength. Let us compromise to reopen government, address border security and get on with the business of this country.”  

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