Opinion

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Letter

An Exercise in Distraction

This shutdown of U.S. government belongs exclusively to POTUS

I wish to respond to the column by Tammi Fisher regarding “The High Cost Of Leverage” in the Jan. 16 Beacon.

Tammi Fisher delivered an exercise in distraction with her column regarding the shutdown of the federal government by President Donald Trump. Ms. Fisher starts her argument by referring to “security funding,” and then does a clever bait and switch, conflating that with Trump’s demand for funding a border wall.

Sen. Jon Tester along with the Democratic caucus did in fact have an agreement with POTUS for border security funding, a move that Republicans and Democrats agreed upon. However, after POTUS was harangued by Ann Coulter and other conservative talking heads on Fox News insisting that POTUS guaranteed a wall the length of the Mexico/US border, POTUS broke the deal he had just made for border security, demanding that Congress appropriate $5.7 billion for a border wall (which would be expected to cost, in total, somewhere between $45 billion and $50 billion).

Tester and the Democratic caucus are on the same page, in that they are more than willing to support border security, but not a border wall that wouldn’t address the problems at the border.

Fisher claims POTUS is willing to negotiate, so long as they agree to his absurd border-wall demand. And that is not a negotiation, but a demand.

If there is one thing that I’ve learned about attorneys from my years working in Superior Court, it is that an attorney’s job is to win the case by any legal means possible, regardless of the guilt or innocence of the accused. Keep that in mind as you ponder the truth or falsity of Ms. Fisher’s claims. This shutdown of U.S. government belongs exclusively to POTUS and the Republican caucus. Also try to keep in mind that POTUS stated unequivocally that the he personally owns this shutdown.

Gary Armstrong
Libby

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