letters | weary of Washington

Obama, Democrats must not let GOP hold national hostage

The issue at the heart of the federal shutdown was the attempt by congressional Republicans to hold as hostage virtually the whole operation of the US government — services important to millions of Americans and the economic prosperity of the nation — to try to reach a goal that they could not achieve by the ordinary processes of legislation.

This was not the usual congressional horse-trading in which legislators trade support for one another’s bills, but rather an attempt at the kind of extortion that must never be allowed to succeed.

President Obama and congressional Democrats must never accede to such Republican demands, or the nation will be subject to an unending repetition of such attempted extortion every time there is a proposed resolution to continue government funding or to increase the debt ceiling.

James Davies