Reality Check w/ John Tracy: Sen. McCain calls for bipartisanship, but is Washington listening?
There must be something about facing your own mortality, that provides a bit of clarity on the value of your life’s work.
I think that’s what we were seeing on Tuesday when Senator John McCain cast the deciding vote on advancing his party’s healthcare bill and then proceeded to take his colleagues to the woodshed for how they got there.
“Our deliberations can still be important and useful, but I think we can all agree, they haven’t been overburdened by greatness lately, and right now they’re not producing much for the American people,” Sen. McCain said during a call for bipartisanship on Tuesday.
For an octogenarian battling an aggressive form of brain cancer, McCain demonstrated plenty of fight — calling on both parties to reject the voices of extremism within their ranks and find their way back to doing what the Senate used to do best.
“I hope we can rely on humility,” Sen. McCain said during his speech. “On our need to cooperate, on our dependence on each other to learn to trust each other again and by so doing, better serve the American people who elected us. Stop listening to the bombastic loudmouths on the radio and television and to the Internet, To hell with them. They don’t want anything done for the public good. Our incapacity is their livelihood.”
McCain said he would not vote for the bill in its current form and predicted its current course will fail.
He would like to see the bill go through the traditional Senate committee process, where a bipartisan bill can be hammered out.
“What we have to lose by trying to work together to find those solutions?” McCain asked during his speech on Tuesday. “We’re not getting much done apart. I don’t think any of us feels very proud of our incapacity. Merely preventing your political opponents from doing what they want isn’t the most inspiring work.”
McCain is not alone. Lisa Murkowski has also called for a bipartisan bill, through the committee process. Her no vote on Tuesday put substance to McCain’s symbolism. In other words, she walked McCain’s talk.
No surprise McCain himself who told her she had done the right thing.In the end, McCain’s impassioned plea for a return to bipartisanship was met with a standing ovation from his colleagues.
It was a moment that for me provided a glimmer of hope that the partisan rhetoric that passes for governing will now and forever be rejected. And from this moment on, our leaders guided by the spirit of inclusiveness in the pursuit of consensus.
“So we want to thank Senator McCain. All of the Republicans, We passed it without one Democrat vote. And that’s a shame. But that’s the way it is,” Trump said.
Well, it was a nice moment while it lasted.
To see Sen. McCain’s speech in its entirety, click here.
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