Friday, March 3, 2017

Political bipartisanship is in a coma; I'd certainly hate to think it's deceased

About the only real concept up for argument is whether the notion of  bipartisan cooperation -- the idea of people of various ideological leanings working together to ensure that everybody can claim a piece of political victory -- is dead, or lying unconscious in a coma from which we have no clue whether it will ever regain consciousness.
Would Rauner, Trump backers hate this sign?

For both at our state and federal levels, we got evidence that our officials aren't the least bit interested in working together. Even when some try to work together, there are others who are determined to work to see that nothing happens.

PERHAPS IT'S BECAUSE they realize many people are more interested in results than ideological victories, no matter how much it might sound for one side to take all or how vengefully delightful it might sound for one side to get absolutely nothing!

I got somewhat worked up at learning earlier this week of the failure of the "grand bargain" to advance. For those of you not paying attention to the nuances of the Springpatch Scene, that is the phrase being used by people to describe the state budget deal supposedly being concocted by the Illinois Senate.

It was something resembling a compromise plan and it would have included minor provisions that Gov. Bruce Rauner once included among the so-called reforms he was asking for.

Most importantly, it would have put the state in the direction of finally approving a budget plan for state government operations -- something that state officials have been unable to do since the days of Pat Quinn as governor.

SERIOUSLY, WE'RE NOW approaching two full years of real time during which state government operations were halted due to a lack of a budget -- except for those agencies performing functions so essential that the federal courts are now essentially telling Illinois how to operate!
Rauner and Trump not political twins ...

Nothing wound up happening because even though Senate Minority Leader Christine Radogno, R-Lemont, was helping to negotiate the deal, none of her Republican colleagues were willing to support it. They were following the lead of Rauner -- whom it seems is more interested in maintaining his partisan stances (his priority always has been to undermine organized labor in Illinois, to the extent that he'll extend his wrath upon the people of the state).

For what it's worth, praise is being offered by the Liberty Principles political action committee, which issued its own statement that called attempts at negotiation nothing more than, "the same old power politics presenting the same false choices" and also said it was prepared to lead people in voting against Rauner if he does NOT maintain his ideological hang-ups.

They also went so far as to lambast former governors James R. Thompson and Jim Edgar of selling out the state -- even though I still remember the days of the early 1990s when Edgar was the guy who held out in budget talks against the same Michael Madigan that Rauner now says is standing firm against him.
... but they do bear similarities

PERHAPS A LITTLE bit of the old Edgar sense of priority in maintaining the daily government operations is what ensured that he got re-elected to a second term, and probably would have won a third term if he had tried to seek it back in 1998. Because at some point, we have to start laying blame on Rauner if he thinks he can go an entire four-year gubernatorial term without an operations budget.

I experienced similar feelings this week when President Donald J. Trump shut down his Twitter account for a few moments and tried speaking to the people. Some are determined to say that Tuesday was the evening Trump became presidential in character.

Yes, I heard his comments about how it was time that people on both sides find a way to come together, with the end result being that we could actually live up in reality to his campaign them of "Making America Great."

Now I know some political pundits, particularly those of a conservative ideological bent, have said that this was a fantastic strategic move by Trump because now it puts the pressure on those of us of a more sensible approach to life to figure out ways to come closer to HIS way of thinking.

THAT COULD ACTUALLY have a bearing of truth, in that I don't doubt for one moment that Trump and his believers seriously think that we wouldn't have any problems in our society if only everybody who didn't agree with them would merely "shut up!" and do what they were told.
CULLERTON: Should all heed his advice?

It was the same sense I felt given off by much of the overly-nationalistic rhetoric spewed in the days following the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon back in 2001. Perhaps some people need for us to be in a "disaster" mode in order for them to think we're moving forward as a society.

Perhaps they also think that peacetime and working together is just a little too dull. Even though one could argue that such dullness is the ultimate evidence that things are functioning properly and that we're all alright.

It also makes me wonder if state Senate President John Cullerton's advice to Rauner is something that also could apply to many other ideologue politicos -- saying of the governor, "he's got to grow up!"


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