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Letter to the Editor: It’s not just about a wall

We have now had a partial government shutdown for about a month. This started after President Donald Trump clearly stated: “I am proud to shut down the government.” He made it clear that in order to push through his legislation, he would hold 800,000 federal workers’ paychecks hostage. This was and is his strategy, but now he wants to blame Democrats in spite of his clear statement that “I will be the one to shut it down…I’m not going to blame you for it.”

Now that we are in this seemingly endless stalemate, why don’t the House of Representatives just let the president have his way and include his $5.7 billion dollars in funding? First of all, they have a responsibility not to waste our tax dollars. The president has not presented a credible fact-based case that building his wall will be an efficient way to spend so much money for border security. Instead of focusing on building a good business case for the wall, he keeps sending out insults and quips in his tweets.

But, an even more important reason for the House to stand firm is that they took an oath to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States.” Article 1, Section 1 states: “All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States.” President Trump is trying to dictate laws. This is unconstitutional! The wall funding should be a separate issue that can be debated and decided by the congress, not dictated by the president.

Regardless of our beliefs about the wall, we need to stand up for our fellow American federal workers who are suffering and for our constitution. We need to contact our senators and representatives and tell them to pass funding to end the shutdown and then debate and vote on the wall based on the facts. That is their job, and we need to insist that they do it.

Mike Lane