Local reps. see hope for bipartisanship in second term

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Members of Florida's delegation had to work hard to stay warm in the DC winter, as they sat at the Capitol Building and watched the president ceremonially sworn in.

But newly-elected Democrats Patrick Murphy and Lois Frankel didn't have to work hard to say, "wow."

"I was sitting next to Patrick Murphy, and at one point, we just looked at each other and had a big smile on our faces," said Frankel.

Rep. Tom Rooney (R-Punta Gorda) not only snapped photos of the president, he grabbed a shot of hip-hops first family: Beyonce and Jay-Z.

"(It) doesn't matter what party you're in, you're part of the American experience first hand, and that's pretty awesome," said Rooney.

But will President Obama's second term,  with all of today's pageantry and well-wishes,  usher in an American experience where Washington works?

Rooney warned that the president seems to have moved a bit left since being reelected.

"Do something with us that we can both claim a victory on. If he doesn't want us to have a victory, then fine, he will be seen as an average president who got his health care bill passed, but he wasn't able to get the big thing done."

Rooney says he wants lasting spending reform.

There are fights coming soon on the debt ceiling, on gun control and immigration.

Frankel says the thing that will make Congress work this time will be an active citizenry that makes it voices heard,

"The unique ingredient is going to have to be the pressure that the public is going to have to continue to place on all of us to try to find bipartisan solutions," said Frankel.

Rooney said the best line of the speech - that everyone could agree was a starting place - was when the president said that, "A little girl born into the bleakest poverty knows she has the same chance to succeed as anybody else, because she is an American, she is free."

Print this article Back to Top

Comments