Monday, December 13, 2010

BEYOND HYPER-PARTISANSHIP: New "No Labels" Movement Launching Now With Conference Streamed Live; Andrei Cherny Representing Arizona

I only caught the tail end of the launch conference for the new multi-partisan(?) organization called "No Labels".  Saw journalist Bob Franken do a quick, praising wrap.  Checked out the website, the speakers I had missed, the declaration, the whole nine yards.

This IS the type of effort that I have supported dating back to 1980, to the extent that I reserved a domain name and spoke with several about joining forces several years ago to form the "Middle Majority".  (Go ahead and take the name - it lost cachet even before Jerry Falwell's passing.)

The new group's declaration is easy to like, hard to take offense at.  (It is reproduced in its entitety below the jump.  "The vital civil center" is where No Labels intends to operate, to move our country forward.

Those jumping into that center today included: New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg (who is NOT running for President), Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, media figures David Brooks, Dylan Ratigan, Bob Franken, Joe Scarborough/Mika Brzezinski, Congresspeople Debbie Stabenow, Joe Lieberman, Kyrsten Gillibrand, Evan Bayh, Mike Castle, and Tom Davis. (By the way, this popped up on my radar screen today because unsuccessful candidate for Arizona State Treasurer Andrei Cherny tweeted that he was at the conference; perhaps not coincidentally, Cherny/Kolbe was the subject of this first "Beyond Hyperpartisanship" post.)

An organizer "interviewed" by Bob Franken at the end noted that more than 15,000 people hit the website during the conference and at least 6,871 have signed their declaration.  I was one of those, but it remains to be seen whether (a) enough other Republicans will join this effort, and (b) organizers will be able to build more momentum than that.  Whatever happens, efforts like these can only better the current political climate.

By the way, I was certainly glad to see that the morning panel was titled "Hyper-Partisanship In America", hosted by MSNBC co-hosts Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough and featuring David Gergen and outgoing and incoming Democratic Senators Evan Bayh and Joe Manchin.  (Arizona's Politics would have been happier to see them place the word "Beyond" in front of the title;  while it is not copyrighted (yet), a Google search of "Beyond Hyper-Partisanship" shows this blog as the #1 listing.) 
We are not labels – we are people.

We care deeply about our country.

We are frustrated and concerned about the tone of politics.

We are passionate about addressing America’s challenges.

We are Democrats, Republicans and Independents.

Most importantly, we are Americans.

We believe hyper-partisanship is destroying our politics and paralyzing our ability to govern.

We may disagree on issues, but we do so with civility and mutual respect.

We believe in the vital civil center — a place where ideas are judged on their merits.

We believe that together we can make the future better and brighter — and give us what we all deserve — a government and a political system that works — one driven by shared purpose and common sense.

We believe our politics can change, so that government will work again and produce better results.

The consequences of inaction have never been greater, because the issues we face have never been more serious, more complicated, or more dangerous.

And yet, we have a crisis of governance – A crisis that compels us to work together to move America forward.

We must put our labels aside, and put the issues and what’s best for the nation first.

A promising future awaits us.

We welcome your comments about this post. Or, if you have something unrelated on your mind, please e-mail to info-at-arizonaspolitics-dot-com. Thanks.

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