Issue beyond compromise?

As this is written (at noon on Friday), 2019 is off to a rocky start.

The partial federal government shutdown is finishing its second week.

Thursday, the stock market continued its stomach-churning ride and the Dow Jones dropped over 600 points. Companies that rely on global economies issued dire earnings warnings. And, we’re not talking about small, insignificant companies. No, we’re talking about behemoths like Apple, Delta and freight delivery firms.

On Friday, the chairman of the Federal Reserve Board said the Fed would be cautious and patient about raising interest rates. The stock market responded by finishing up over 600 points.

Also on Friday, President Donald Trump told congressional leaders that the government shutdown could go on for “months, even years.” The president said he was prepared for such an eventuality if Democrats do not agree to fund the wall on the border with Mexico for $5.6 billion.

The president later said that he was even considering declaring the lack of a wall on the southern border a “national emergency.” That would allow him ostensibly to use money slated for the Department of Defense to build the wall.

New Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said construction of a wall between the United States and Mexico would be “immoral.”

And that’s where the country stands. One side says building a wall is a “national emergency,” the other says such construction would be “immoral.”

Our country, our democracy, was conceived with the basic thought that compromise was essential for our government to function. Right now, the government is not functioning — part of it is shut down.

How do you find a compromise between national emergency and immoral? Our hyper-partisan politicians may have finally created an issue beyond compromise. Both sides seem to be dug in.

Statesmen need to emerge, and soon. The country is more important than party. Solving the impasse will do wonders for the stock market. Making government function again should be the most important goal of every politician in Washington, D.C.

* Editorials reflect the opinion of the publisher.

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