The Boston Globe on Monday published its endorsement of Ohio Governor John Kasich in the New Hampshire Republican presidential primary. While Governor Kasich is no doubt happy with the show of support, I want to focus on the 'why' behind the Globe's endorsement - civility and the willingness to work across party lines.
The key reasons the Globe endorsed Kasich are 1) his winning the primary would deal "...a blow to the divisive, demagogic candidates running on nativism and other simplicities; " 2) "New Hampshire can reward a candidate whose politics have been largely positive-and rebuke those candidates who have spent their campaigns appealing to voters' fears and biases;" and 3) his "ability to walk across the aisle to solve big issues" citing specifically his joining a bipartisan deal to impose a 10 year ban on assault weapons when he was in Congress.
So the Globe is sending the message - one that we need newspapers across the country to echo - that civility and bipartisanship matter. Regardless of whether a republican, a democrat or an independent becomes our next president, they will face a divided country and an even more divided Congress, and the only way they - and therefore we, as a country - will be successful is to work together. Disagreements are going to happen - it is simply a fact of life. But the bigger issue is having someone at the table who is willing to listen to all sides and to find a solution that works.
The president needs to be able to work with Congress - both House and Senate and democrats as well as republicans. He or she also needs to be able to work with fifty governors who have issues and concerns that impact the federal government. At the end of the day the man or woman who succeeds President Barack Obama will need to work with people with differing viewpoints across the US, not to mention the world. And that means having the ability to listen, reason and problem solve for the greater good. We need a president who is going to find the right road - not simply demand it is 'my way or the highway' - that is in the best interests of all Americans, not just those on the left or right.
So a huge thank you to the Boston Globe for setting a standard that I hope other newspapers will follow.
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