Sunday, October 22, 2006

Bipartisanship as an Inevitability?

I keep hearing talking heads declare that even if the Democrats win majorities in both the House and Senate, they will have to seek "bipartisan compromise" in order to navigate past Republicah filibusters or save themselves from Bush's veto pen. Oh, really?

What if the Democratic Party passes legislation that is popular with the public, even if it goes against Bush's policies. Let's say, for example, that a significant majority of the public supports broad federal funding for stem cell research or an increased minimum wage. Or allocation of a greater portion of "homeland security" funds to states and cities which are at the greatest risk. They pass the legislation. Is this really the type of legislation which the Republicans in the Senate are going to filibuster? And although GW can't run again, does he want his legacy to be that of an (unpopular) President who vetoes (popular) legislation? Does the Republican Party want to run its 2008 Presidential campaign on that foundation?

In this era where "bipartisanship" has often been defined as "accepting scraps from the table of the majority party", there is room for some turnabout.

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