Joe Manchin, Susan Collins say leaders were 'dug in,' should be praised for reaching agreement

Sens. Joe Manchin and Susan Collins said Monday that a shutdown never should have happened, but praised their party leaders for bringing the shutdown to the end.

“In the end, I give our leaders a lot of credit for listening to the ideas that we put forward and for showing some flexibility, after starting out being pretty dug in,” Ms. Collins, Maine Republican, said at a press conference on Capitol Hill.

She spoke with Mr. Manchin, West Virginia Democrat, at the press event. The two were part of a bipartisan group that helped facilitate an end to the shutdown.

“Should we have ever shut the government down? Absolutely not,” Mr. Manchin said.

He explained that the system needs to change to prevent such an occurrence from happening in the future.

“I don’t believe that either leader on either side should have the power that they have,” Mr. Manchin said.

The Senate reached an agreement to end the shutdown and fund the government through Feb. 8, but said it will address immigration, particularly protections for children brought to the U.S. illegally, in that time.