Southern Arizona has one Congressman whos a Democrat and one whos a Republican. They came together Tuesday to update the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce on top issues in Congress. One of their most urgent concerns is how to head off a government budget shutdown when Congress goes back in session next month.

Representatives Ral M. Grijalva and Juan Ciscomani conceded they have very different political views but they do agree on the value of cordial relations and working together whenever they can for the benefit of Southern Arizona.

The lead-off question covered the danger of Congress locking up in a budget impasse that would bring on a government shutdown.

Rep. Grijalva says the Republican Freedom Caucus is ready to dig in and demand concessions on cultural issues hes not ready to concede.

Well, the latest the latest hostage note from the Freedom Caucus was that if you don’t do these things, which involve completely banning any services, reproductive or otherwise to military and to others in this country that’s wrong and the other one was their idea of border security which just ramps it up and further militarize the border,” he shared. “And and so those are those demands and LGBTQ critical race theory, diversity, guidance. All those things are demands at the part of the Freedom Caucus.”

CR means continuing resolution, a temporary budget deal to continue government while negotiations continue.

Rep. Grijalva says Republicans only have a five vote majority so House Speaker Kevin McCarthy needs to act like a speaker, step up and make deals, even if it means making deals with Democrats.

Rep. Ciscomani says hell work to keep his colleagues pragmatic about passing a budget but he says there are issues hell dig in on.

There are non movables for both sides. Listen, there are things that I stand on very firmly that are non negotiables in terms of spending less next year than we did last year,” he explained. “For example, that’s a must. I think that we have to abide by. And that was part of the debt ceiling negotiations as well. no new taxes, no new government programs.

However, Rep. Ciscomani says even this divided Congress has managed to agree enough to pass important bills, and he thinks they will reach an agreement on the budget.