I have been re-reading my posts and to my surprise, have noticed my references to bi-partisanship and cooperation suddenly appearing. It was apparent in the announcement of the immigration proposal, and the new farm bill idea put forward by a mixed group of Congressfolk last week as well.
Trade issues have also been rejuvenated.
Of course, there are many who deserve credit (or blame, depending on your perspective) for the deal.
On the Republican side, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, U.S. Trade Representative Susan Schwab, and House Ways and Means ranking minority member Jim McCrery, of Louisiana, all showed they could get something done with a Democratic House.
On the other side, House Trade Subcommittee Chairman Sander Levin, of Michigan, a leader on developing a new consensus on trade, nailed down guidelines he has been championing for years. Even House Speaker Nancy Pelosi defied critics by showing she is willing to both take on the president and cooperate on legislation when appropriate. [More]
It is hard for me to pinpoint exactly how this pragmatic spirit is gathering momentum. But until proven otherwise, I'll ascribe it to politicians who are sincerely interested in getting something done and weary of confrontational, strong-arm legislating.
This also means we'd better pay attention a little more closely to what's going down in DC. Stuff could happen!