During this political season, let’s step back and look at our nation’s capital. It’s divided. I don’t mean a little divided. It seems as though one side is almost scared to even speak to the other. Even on issues where they agree it seems, at least to me, some leaders are more worried about making the other side look bad than they are about passing good legislation for the American people.
It’s okay to disagree. Our Founding Fathers encouraged debate in the system they set up. They made it intentionally difficult for a bill to become a law. Discussing ideas, working together to find a solution and, dare I say, finding a compromise in some instances is what made our country great for so many years. In my lifetime President Reagan worked with Speaker O’Neill, President George H. W. Bush worked with Speaker Foley and President Clinton worked with Speaker Gingrich. They did not always agree, but they were willing to sit down at the table in an attempt to solve problems.
At the risk of being ostracized by some in my party, I do not look at those on the other side of the aisle as enemies. I believe the majority of them to be good people; however in areas of social issues and fiscal policy we just have a fundamental philosophical disagreement on the role of government. That’s okay. The idea is to compromise without compromising on your principles.
This lesson was taught to me when I worked for Senator Thad Cochran. Senator Cochran was Mississippi’s first statewide Republican elected official. He did what many said could never be done. He took the risk, made the sacrifice and blazed the trail.
I had the honor of working for Senator Cochran from 1996 to 1999. During the summer of 1997 I was in an elevator at the Russell Senate Office Building in Washington when former Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT) got on. He saw my ID and asked who I worked for. I told him Senator Cochran, and he replied, “I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like Thad.” I was taken aback. This was a Democrat from Connecticut, and he was actually saying something nice about my boss.
It showed me Senator Cochran had a great working relationship with those in the opposite party, they were his friends and they had a mutual respect for one another even though they disagreed on major issues. That was the one of many lessons I learned by working with Senator Cochran.
Senator Cochran’s style is that of a statesman. He’s not the first one in front of a television camera, he’s not on all the Sunday morning talk shows and he’s not antagonistic toward the other side. He’s passionate about Mississippi, he’s passionate about the country he’s served and he’s passionate about results.
I hope the Republicans take the Senate in November for a number of reasons, but none of the least of which it would give our own Senator Thad Cochran the Chairmanship of the powerful Senate Appropriations Committee.
Mississippians have been lucky to have Senator Cochran serve in the US Senate, and it’s my hope he continues to serve for many years to come.
About Doug Davis: Doug Davis is a fifth generation Mississippian. Doug is an assistant vice president at First Security Bank in Hernando and has been with First Security since November of 2001. Doug was elected to State Senate in a special election in December of 2004 and was re-elected in 2007 for a full four year term.
- Group urging McDaniel to run for U.S. Senate goes viral (mississippipep.com)
- CAGW Names Sens. Inouye, Cochran Porkers of the Month (gloucestercitynews.net)
- Fundraising plans heat up for Tampa (politico.com)
- Tea Party Alert (itmakessenseblog.com)
- Sen. Thad Cochran attends WAMA expansion groundbreaking in Ocean Springs (Gallery) (gulflive.com)