Whitman County Gazette - Serving Whitman County since 1877

By Gordon Forgey
Publisher 

A champion of bipartisanship

 

August 30, 2018 | View PDF



Long-serving Senator John McCain died Saturday. His death was anticipated. He had been suffering from brain cancer for months.

A week of remembrances is underway. A memorial service is planned for Saturday with his burial on Sunday.

Among others, both former presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush will give eulogies. Both defeated McCain in his bids for the presidency.

This in itself says a lot about McCain. He was revered by many. He was respected by many more. Most importantly, he worked with politicians in both parties.

He was also attacked by many. Often he was accused of not being Republican enough, as he worked with Democrats to get legislation accomplished.

If there is one common thread in the comments about him, it is that he put the country before his party. Although a staunch conservative, he would work with anyone to see that what he thought was right was achieved.

Sometimes he was right. Sometimes he was wrong, but in most cases his reasons were honorable. In most cases, too, he did what he thought was best for the country.

Despite one’s political views, McCain should be honored because he saw beyond party lines and tried to engender cooperation between the factions. His was an old-school approach, not appreciated by all. Yet it was in the best interests of the country.

McCain admitted he made many mistakes, but one of them was not his attempts at bilateral consensus.

He had strong views and intractable opinions, but most often he understood the need for bipartisanship. He also understood that working in a bipartisan way did not mean giving up one’s beliefs.

We can hope as the memory of him fades, as surely it will, that his efforts at consensus and conciliation are not forgotten. Efforts such as his are essential for the welfare and security of this country.

The more political leaders look across party lines, the more government will accomplish for the good of all. And, if it is because of McCain, he could have no greater legacy.

 
 

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