WITH BPC’S BOARD CHAIR AND PRESIDENT
BPC Board Chair Frank Keating and BPC President Jason Grumet sat down with Dialogue to reflect on the organization’s achievements over the past 12 months. In a short Q&A, the duo addressed the tumultuous political environment and whether there is still room for bipartisanship in Washington.
Q. It feels like we can’t escape a news cycle without being inundated with partisan squabbles. Is bipartisanship still relevant in this political environment?
Keating: “Conflict and combat sell newspapers. But you have to have Republicans and Democrats at the state legislative level and the U.S. Congress come together and solve problems. Which is why you need a highly credible bipartisan organization like BPC.”
Grumet: “It’s understandable that many Americans have lost faith in our political process, but the answer to bad politics is good politics. The strength of this country has always been the capacity to reconcile legitimate differences. We need to acknowledge, respect, and engage the sources of our policy disagreements. Bipartisanship isn’t simply relevant, it is the only way to govern a free and diverse country.”
The Bipartisan Policy Center enjoys a reputation as a fair arbiter of partisan differences and a promoter of achievable policy solutions. Over the last year, BPC has successfully brought together members from both sides of the aisle to foster collaboration and advance bipartisan debate and solutions, while our affiliated 501(c)(4) organization, BPC Action, has successfully influenced meaningful legislation.
OUR LEGISLATIVE IMPACT
In the 114th Congress, many BPC policy recommendations were included in legislation.
Six bills were enacted that include significant BPC input:
Our nation has come a long way since the depths of the Great Recession of 2008, but despite a low unemployment rate and a stock market that has reached new heights, many American families and businesses still feel economic insecurity and uncertainty. From millennials worried about crushing college debt to former factory workers who fear that they can no longer afford a mortgage, let alone save for retirement, millions of Americans are losing faith in the ideals of opportunity that define our nation’s unique economic history.
The United States must be prepared to defend against multiple threats from many directions and nimble enough to counter new security challenges. The growing ambitions of North Korea and Iran and the spread of non-state groups like ISIS are just a few of the foreign policy issues confronting the nation. The strategic role of the U.S. has become even more complicated as the new administration re-evaluates many of the relationships and expectations that have guided U.S. foreign policy since the Cold War.
Innovation is the core of America’s economic strength and future prosperity. New ideas and technological advances are the key to fostering sustained economic growth, creating jobs in new industries, and continuing America’s global leadership.
We hear all too often that many Americans doubt the basic competence of government to make a positive difference in their lives. While badly frayed, American democracy can rebound given reasonable incentives for collaboration and deliberation. Our optimism is grounded in years of success in working with political leaders and experts from a wide range of professional and ideological perspectives to find smart, pragmatic, and implementable ideas for tackling our nation’s most important challenges.
Dialogue is the quarterly magazine of the Bipartisan Policy Center.
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ISSN: 2473-800X (print) ISSN: 2473-8018 (online).