Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-Westlake Village) issued the following statement today regarding the shutdown of the federal government:

“Make no mistake, this shutdown is President Trump’s shutdown.

“The President of the United States purposely and knowingly forced a shutdown through a combination of incompetence, inexperience, and spite. When you are the head of the ruling party that needs to pass important legislation with both the majority and the minority party, as is necessary to advance the country’s budget, you need to negotiate in good faith with both parties. That should be obvious to anyone who has taken high school civics.

“But the President did the opposite. As if the Apprentice never ended, the President seems to have orchestrated a shutdown, on the anniversary of his presidency, simply for ratings, attention, and the havoc it would wreak on the country. He brought in Members of Congress from both parties, together and separately, put them in front of TV cameras, suggested he was working in good faith and that an agreement was close, and then hours or days later, would do a complete about face. Repeatedly. And then, hours before the deadline, the President, Speaker Ryan, and Majority Leader McConnell put a bill on the floor, with zero input from Democrats, and told us to take it or leave it. That’s not leadership, and it’s not governing. It’s extortion – threatening to cause pain and suffering on the American people, poor children, and our military if their demands weren’t met. For the sake of our country and the strength of our democracy, it simply could not stand.

“Now that we are here, we simply must insist that President Trump and Republican leadership sit down with Democrats and hammer out a deal that represents the values of the American people, through the representatives of the American people.

“In Ventura County, that means long-term and critical funding for our military. It also means long-term and critical funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program and community health centers, funding for wildfire relief and mitigation, funding for our veterans, funding to address the opioid addiction crisis, and funding for other important priorities that support our national security and our economic security. And yes, it means a humane, fair, and expedited resolution to the status of the Dreamers in our community whose lives are being treated like pawns in a chess game. Enough is enough.

“Mr. President, I stand ready to work around the clock to negotiate a fair, reasonable, bipartisan agreement that addresses the needs of my district and the needs of the country. I hope you will join me.”

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