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Local Officials Offer Thoughts on Shutdown

City council members, county commissioners and a state senator all say Washington politicians must find common ground.
(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) It's day three of the federal shutdown with no end in sight. Patience is starting to wear thin among local leaders.

"I'm a little disappointed," said R.T. Turner, Presiding Commissioner for Buchanan County. "My disappointment is that grown adults can't sit down in a room and work something out for the good of all the people."

"It's difficult when it infringes on people's rights and it's so contested," said Barbara LaBass, St. Joseph city council member.

The two sides are far apart and nowhere close to coming to an agreement. Some think it's not so much about the issue, but which side of the aisle representatives are sitting on.

"The people that are making the decisions in Washington aren't thinking about the American people, I really don't believe," said Ron Hook, Buchanan County commissioner. "I think they're thinking more about what party they're representing, whether it be Democratic or Republican."

Area office holders have some advice for those in Washington, D.C.

"Sometimes you need to have a catalyst," said Missouri State Senator Rob Schaaf. "You need to have something that happens or somebody to start bringing the two sides together. Both sides need to find a position in the middle."

"You have to look for some middle ground somewhere. If we're going to move this thing forward," Turner said.

Unfortunately, the way it's looking now, it could come down to which side can wait it out the longest.

"Sometimes there just isn't common ground, and I've been there," Schaaf said. "Then it just becomes a battle of wills and who can last the longest."

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