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Trump is irrelevant. It's time for Democrats and Republicans to compromise and end this shutdown

Trump is irrelevant. It's time for Democrats and Republicans to compromise and end this shutdown
Trash builds up along the National Mall on Dec. 24 as trash collectors are off work during a partial government shutdown. (Olivier Douliery / TNS)

To the editor: Why is the government shutdown portrayed as a battle between congressional Democrats and the president, each hoping to score political points by blaming the other? Even Republicans concede that President Trump’s demand for $5 billion in border wall funding cannot pass out of Congress.

Instead, members of Congress should work together to pass a government funding bill, table any decision regarding a wall, override any presidential veto, and get our agencies functioning again. Both parties need to get serious about creating a comprehensive immigration and border security policy and not pretend that Trump’s tantrums, designed to whip up his base, are any substitute for serious leadership.

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Our focus should not be on the president, but on those Republicans who know better but are too afraid to stand up to Trump and do the right thing.

Bill Carlson, Pacific Palisades

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To the editor: The president is negotiating as if he were of regal heritage from a bygone era. When he proposed a secure, physical barrier between the U.S. and Mexico, and to have a foreign government pay for it, his supporters accepted his nonsense.

In the words of Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas), a wall is a “14th-century solution to a 21st-century problem.” The president argues that walls work, but he offers no evidence. He says it will keep out drugs and terrorists, also with no evidence. Since Mexico bluntly refused to pay for the wall, he is asking taxpayers to fund it.

He now wants the leaders of Congress to negotiate with him, but there will not be any such negotiation. That’s because Trump will rely on his lifetime business experience, which doesn’t include any real negotiation.

James Severtson, Reseda

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To the editor: The question of whether we should build a wall on our southern border is a no brainer. I can’t imagine why anyone would oppose it.

Many Democrats want U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement abolished, oppose the deportation of immigrants in the U.S. illegally, welcome the establishment of so-called sanctuary cities, support a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers and oppose construction of a wall. Why can’t they just admit that they want open borders?

We already have millions of undocumented immigrants in this country. Building a wall should not have even been the subject of a debate, let alone one that shuts down parts of the federal government.

Ed Trillo, South Gate

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To the editor: Trump is merely the temporary president of the United States, but he acts as if his word is the law.

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The division of power between the legislative and executive branches of government require both sides to modify their positions and enact appropriate legislation. The president cannot use his demand of $5 billion for a wall to partially shut down the government.

Trump must compromise, and the Democrats are willing to compromise.

Jason G. Brent, Las Vegas

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