Former Utah governor
As I reflect on the death of former representative, senator, presidential candidate, ambassador and war hero George McGovern, I find myself nostalgic for a bygone era in American politics. Even though many vehemently disagreed with McGovern's liberal policies (which led to his landslide loss in the 1972 presidential election), he was still widely respected as an articulate, dedicated leader. His generation, which thrived in government from the end of
McGovern is not the only one. Consider one of my political heroes, George Mitchell: federal judge, Democratic senator, and a special envoy to both the Middle East and Northern Ireland, in addition to many roles in the private sector. Or, from the other side of the aisle,
Leaders like Jon Huntsman are rare. We are left with
The era of the statesmen is not coming back soon. Partisanship is dominant, and cooperation is dead. We are 15 days away from one of the most divisive elections in modern history, one mostly devoid of meaningful discussion. Bipartisan legislation is almost nonexistent. The era of accepting a commission as an ambassador instead of a lucrative law firm partnership or presidency of a consulting firm is over. The era of calling your fellow lawmakers "communists," as Florida Republican Rep.
Whether Mr. Huntsman would have won an election against President Obama is uncertain. What I am certain of is that public servants like him are a dying breed, and that he will have a meaningful future in politics even if he never runs for office again. The same cannot be said for many of our current officials. It is due to lack of ambition, ingrained party ties, and an
No matter who wins the presidential election, fixing the country will require the best of all sides to ignore partisanship and craft compromise. At this rate, our elected officials are not up to the task. I doubt a prominent Democrat would accept a cabinet position or ambassadorship under a President