Alaska lawmakers float ideas for ending government shutdown

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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) -- On day 20 of the partial government shutdown, lawmakers in Washington say they are still looking for a solution. Alaska’s federal officials say they do not want the shutdown to continue, but maintain Democrats need to come off their hard line when it comes to the wall. The delegation says it is looking for compromise as federal workers continue to live without pay.

Alaska’s lone Congressman Don Young (R-AK) says Washington is devoid of a spirit of give and take.

“If you want to work together you have to give a little bit too. Compromise is not one way,” said Young.

The longest serving member in the House of Representatives says all sides in this debate need to be willing to make concessions. He says the Congress was on the right track months ago when a proposal was floated to build the wall in exchange for guaranteeing a pathway to citizenship for so-called “dreamers.”

As federal workers across the country go without pay, the president’s demands for money for a physical structure at the border and the refusal of Democrats to meet those demands have the nation in a stalemate.

“If we fail to advance any proposals, we’re just going to be in a situation where we are today, which is not good productive conversations going on,” said Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK).

Murkowski says she wants to open the government on a short-term basis, and continue the border security debate when it is open. She says she wants the issue addressed, but doesn’t believe in the merits of this shutdown.

“That’s certainly something I would consider,” said Senator Dan Sullivan (R-AK).

Sullivan says he would be on board with the short term reopening only if it would lead to significant border security funding.

If the partial government shutdown continues through Saturday it will be the longest in history.