By ALEX JONES, Sandusk High School graduate attending Ashland University
"We simply must look beyond partisan goals and find common ground as Americans. It is imperative that the Members of Congress recognize that partisanship will not serve the American people."
-- Michael Crapo
It is amazing how one event can turn any political science classroom into a circus. The health care summit of a few weeks ago did just that.
However, I focused not so much on the content of what was being said, but rather on bipartisanship, and how needed it is.
Bipartisanship is a conservative philosophy in that it is the traditional way of doing things, not that it is strictly limited to Republicans.
Bipartisanship, although well proven, seems to be lost today by both parties. It was good to see that both parties were able to sit down and talk about what should come next. However, it seemed like Democrats were only appearing to want a bipartisan effort. Republicans looked well prepared and offered several good points, but after more than seven hours all the Republicans got was that their ideas would be "considered." There really is not much bipartisanship there.
The problem that America faces is that our leaders at the moment are far off to the left, which means that their policies are far to the left. In response to this conservatives have to move further to the right to balance things out. Which, to be honest, this has happened before, and in reverse.
The problem is, in this case, that the legislation that is being brought forth is going further left as well. Liberals fail to realize America is still a center-right country. So when the argument is made that Democrats are out of touch with the American people, there is truth to that.
Democrats have had a supermajority for over a year now, and America has yet to see reforms that they are behind. We have been given a bailout, which we are still waiting to see the affects of. And Democrats have argued back and forth over a health care reform bill. All America has really gotten out of that is a lesson in bad politics.
I hope Democrats on Capitol Hill realize soon bipartisanship is needed from step one on any reform. That is the American way.
From the beginning politicians with differing opinions have come together to hammer out compromises that worked for everyone. Likewise, it has never worked for one party to take control and forge legislation without the other side. Without bipartisanship, it is impossible to stay in touch with the American people, because compromise is normally in the best interest of the American people.
Let's hope that these showings of bipartisanship are more than just a show. If they are nothing more than just a political show, then American citizens are going to be the ones to suffer.
We all need to ask whether one-party rule can have our best interest at heart. We need to realize that our system of government only works when all sides come together and meet in the middle. Conservatives have not been silent on this issue. In fact, they have brought legitimate ideas to the table. Will the administration really use these ideas? Or will it be business as usual from the White House?