09 March 2008

A Uniter Not a Compromiser


The Obama campaign has sent journalists eight pages of examples of his reaching across the aisle in the Senate. But these are small-bore items of almost no controversy - more help for war veterans, reducing loose nukes in the former Soviet Union and the like. Bipartisan support for apple pie is hardly a profile in courage.

On the difficult compromises that required the political courage to challenge one's own political constituency, Obama flinched: the "gang of 14" compromise on judicial appointments, the immigration compromise to which Obama tried to append union-backed killer amendments, and, just last month, the compromise on warrantless eavesdropping that garnered 68 votes in the Senate. But not Obama's.

Who, in fact, supported all of these bipartisan deals, was a central player in two of them, and brokered the even more notorious McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform? John McCain, of course.

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