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Question of the Day
— President Obama to former President George H.W. Bush who visited the White House on Monday.
Seventy lawmakers claim it’s a first. On Thursday morning, a bustling gaggle of Republicans and Democrats will gather outside the U.S. Capitol to publicly present a legislative reform package of nine bills in “a first-of-its-kind format,” meant to show off newfound bipartisanship.
“Lately, it has been pretty rare to see Democrats and Republicans even saying a nice word about one another, let alone coming together on the grounds of the Capitol,” says Rep. Reid J. Ribble, Wisconsin Republican. “But that’s what you’ll see.”
The coalition calls it the “Make America Work” package; the bills in question call for a more efficient, less wasteful government — certainly something the tea party has called for since 2009. The event, however, has been organized by No Labels, an interest group founded three years ago by former Republican presidential hopeful Jon Huntsman Jr. and Sen. Joe Manchin III, West Virginia Democrat.
“This event warrants the attention of everyone in Washington because of what it means for the progress of our country,” says Rep. Ami Bera, California Democrat. “Our announcement will provide a template for how Democrats and Republicans can work together.”
“It’s common ground on some common-sense measures,” insists Rep. Tim Griffin, Arkansas Republican.
POLL DU JOUR
• 70 percent of Americans “very closely” followed the verdict in the 1992 Rodney King beating case; the figure included 83 percent of blacks and 69 percent of whites.
• 48 percent of Americans overall followed the 1994 arrest of O.J. Simpson very closely; the numbers included 63 percent of blacks and 46 percent of whites.
• 35 percent overall followed the 2012 shooting of Trayvon Martin very closely; the figure included 70 percent of blacks and 30 percent of whites.
• 35 percent overall followed the charges made against George Zimmerman very closely; the figure included 63 percent of blacks and 30 percent of whites.
• 30 percent overall followed the 2009 arrest of Henry Gates very closely; the figure included 52 percent of blacks and 27 percent of whites.
• 26 percent overall followed the trial of George Zimmerman very closely; the figure includes 56 percent of black and 20 percent of whites.
Source: A Pew Research Center survey of 1,002 U.S. adults conducted July 11-14, plus historic Pew data from 1992-2012.
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