Keep it civil, Hillary

I have been on a mission quest for more political civility. It won’t end any time soon. I now want to issue some advice to a woman who should have won the 2016 presidential election, but who got the surprise of her political life.

Hillary Rodham Clinton needs an attitude check.

Clinton has told interviewers the time for civil public debate will occur when and if Democrats win control of Congress after next month’s midterm election. Until then? All bets are off, she says.

Republicans only understand “strength,” she said. She said Democrats cannot deal with a political party that won’t adhere to a code of civil discourse and debate.

The only option, according to the World of Hillary, is to take the fight straight to the GOP. Hit them as hard as they hit you, she said.

C’mon, Mme. Secretary/former senator/former first lady! 

That kind of attitude only begets more anger. It is unbecoming of someone who had my vote in 2016. Just for the record, I don’t regret for one second — or an instant! — casting my presidential vote for Hillary Clinton.

My hope is that we can return sooner rather than later to a time when Democrats and Republicans can work together, rather than at cross purposes. I want a return to an era when Republican lawmakers, such as the late Sen. Everett Dirksen of Illinois, locked arms with Democratic presidents, such as the late Lyndon Johnson. Or when Democratic lawmakers, such as the late Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts, did the same with Republican presidents, such as George W. Bush.

Dirksen and Johnson helped forge the Voting Rights and Civil Rights acts; Kennedy and Bush helped formulate sweeping education reform.

These days, the two sides lob grenades at each other from a distance. That is not in the interest of good government.

I remain a bit of an idealist on this, but I believe one of the political parties can set the example for the other one to follow. If Hillary is right, that the GOP only understands “strength,” the remedy could be to show the other side an ability and willingness to bridge the great divide.

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