Is BiPartisanship Dead?
Considering the toxic nature of today's politics, the title question above could largely be intrepreted to be rhetorical. We just finished 8 years of the Obama adminstration that saw the Republicans united in partisan opposition. The Democrats seemed determined to return the favor even though they are the minority party in both houses of Congress. We are a long way from Tip O'Neil and Ronald Reagan working together. Or even Ted Kennedy and George W. Bush working closely on education legislation including No Child Left Behind.
If ever there was a cause for bipartisan effort and compromise, it's healthcare. The current version of Trumpcare narrowly passed through the House with zero Democratic support. Trumpcare 2.0 was crafted as a compromise between more traditional Republican conservatives and the alt right wing. As it heads to the Senate, it is extremely doubtful that the bill will even be considered as is. The big question is how will the Senate leadership deal with it. So far, all indications are that Republicans will craft a bill to garner 50 Republican votes. That means they don't care about Democratic support and that it will be crafted in a way that it can be passed via "reconcilliation" meaning it is filibuster proof. Democrats for their part seem united in opposition in hopes of preserving Obamacare and not giving Republicans a victory. Under this scenario, the only hope for the American people is that there are at least 3 moderate Republican Senators with enough backbone and integrity to stand up against the draconian features of Trumpcare 2.0.
It doesn't have to be this way and it shouldn't be this way. Healthcare is way too big of an issue that affects every single American and accounts for a huge portion of our economy. It is exactly the kind of issue that deserves bipartisan effort to reach a consensus that can propel the country forward. We don't need a new version that becomes a weapon for one side in the next election. We need a version that Americans can rally around and will continue to evolve and improve -- not one that is fodder to be overturned in the next election. Healthcare should not be a political football tossed around for partisan gain. Our hope is that that most august body of American politics the Senate can somehow turn the tide and work together to craft a bill for all Americans. Sadly, we have little faith that will happen.
7/19/2020 09:18:37 pm
I do not think that it is dead. I think that it is just taking a rest right now. The way that politics and society goes is that they are trend based. If what you are fighting for is not trending, then you will not be able to do it. Of course, there are people who will try to dictate the things that you want to do in life. If there are things that are important to you, then you need to go and do that.
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Our column to reflect on the purplish nature of our country when we combine our red and blue states.