Who says bipartisanship is impossible???
I think that its great that we have finally passed healthcare reform. With an ultra partisan, and ever toxic culture in Washington, it may seem that Democrats and Republicans working together on legislation may be close to impossible. I disagree, and I will highlight a handful of Republicans that President Obama should be aggressively courting as he hopes to get some movement on financial regulatory reform, cap & trade, and possibly immigration.
Lindsay Graham- We now know John McCain has went off the deep end, and acquired a hyper partisan edge of late, which is why the senator from South Carolina is now the maverick of the Senate. He is working with Democratic senator Chuck Schumer to craft a bipartisan immigration reform bill, and is also teaming up with senator John Kerry to address the climate change issue.
Scott Brown- The freshman Republican senator who pulled off the upset in Massachusetts may end up being a good friend to us the next three years. Though he opposed the healthcare bill, he framed himself during the campaign as a “Scott Brown” Republican, and one that would possibly have an independent streak. This was evident in his decision to join four other Republican senators in supporting the recent jobs bill that Harry Reid came up with.
Olympia Snowe/Susan Collins- The pair of centrist senators from Maine also joined Scott Brown in supporting the jobs bill. Senator Snowe was also the one that cast the deciding vote to bring the healthcare bill out of the finance committee.
Kit Bond/George Voinovich- These two Mdiwest senators are retiring this year, and dont have nearly as much political pressure to tow the Republican lines as some of their colleagues. They both worked together with Democratic senators Debbie Stabenow and Carl Levin to craft an auto bailout. They also both signed the jobs bill.
These senators are the key to Obama passing legislation with at least a respectable number of Republican votes. I believe Rahm Emmanuel is already putting things in place to have a decent enough relationship with these senators to be able to call on them in the future to get some legislation passed.