On Tuesday, former Vice President Joe Biden sparked controversy when he said that he expected Republicans to reach across the aisle and work with Democrats once Trump leaves office.
Biden’s comments prompted criticisms that Republicans were hardly paragons of bipartisanship during the Obama administration.
In fact, during the Tea Party era, Republicans opposed much of President Barack Obama’s agenda, including his signature health care policy.
Here’s where the other candidates stand on bipartisanship and working with the other side to get legislation passed.
1. Michael Bennet
When he announced his Presidency recently he called President Donald Trump fiscally reckless.
2. Steve Bullock
Steve Bullock, Governor of Montana, has presented himself as a bipartisan leader in his state.
3. Cory Booker
Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) has come out strongly against Republican Party politics and called for more consensus. “This isn’t complicated, folks,” Booker said back in July. “Our grandparents showed us how to build a great economy. They were out training this generation of Americans. They were out investing in infrastructure this generation of Americans. They were out R&D-ing this generation of Americans. We need to stop the bullshit partisanship in this country. We really do.”
4. Pete Buttigieg
The Mayor of South Bend, Indiana, Pete Buttigieg has made much of his identity as a gay Christian. Last week, he told NBC that he didn’t think God was partisan — but he certainly didn’t think God would be a Republican.
It wouldn’t “be the one that sent the current president into the White House,” he said of God’s political leanings.
5. Julian Castro
The former Mayor of San Antonio, who has struggled to differentiate himself from the over two dozen contenders for President, has not taken a strong stance on whether or not Democrats should work with Republicans to find common solutions.
6. John Delaney
John Delaney, former US Representative from Maryland, has promised to work across the aisle, especially his first hundred days.
“One of the things I’ve pledged is in my first hundred days, only to do bipartisan proposals,” he said.
“Wouldn’t it be amazing if a president looked at the American people at the inauguration and said, ‘I represent every one of you, whether you voted for me or not and this is how I’m going to prove it.’”
7. Tulsi Gabbard
Rep. Gabbard (D-Hawaii) has worked with Republicans to pass legislation denouncing the US role in supporting Saudi Arabia’s war in Yemen.
“For too long, the United States has supported Saudi Arabia, turning a blind eye to the horrifying atrocities committed against millions of Yemeni civilians since the start of this genocidal war in 2015,” Gabbard said.
“Even after Saudi Arabia dropped a bomb on a school bus that killed 40 children last month, the Trump Administration reaffirmed its support for this illegal war—reportedly to avoid jeopardizing a $2 billion arms deal with Saudi Arabia and the UAE. It is long overdue for Congress to reassert its role and responsibility provided within the Constitution, and end our illegal support for Saudi Arabia’s war now.”
8. Kirsten Gillibrand
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) told a college student during a town hall that she would not be appointing any Republicans to her administration.
“Interesting idea, but no,” she said.
9. Kamala Harris
The Senator from California has worked with Republicans in the Senate to improve election security.
“The urgency to secure our elections is clear,” said Harris. “The 2018 midterm elections are already upon us, and we must assume that Russia will continue its attacks on the very heart of our democracy. We fought hard and funding is a critical first step to providing states with the resources to begin securing their election infrastructure. I look forward to working with my colleagues to ensure Congress continues these efforts by passing the Secure Elections Act.”
10. John Hickenlooper
The former Governor of Colorado has worked with Republicans in the state on a number of important issues, including pot legalization.
11. Gov. Jay Inslee
Governor Jay Inslee of New Hampshire has promised bipartisan solutions to climate change.
12. Amy Klobuchar
When Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) announced her candidacy multiple of her Republican colleagues vouched for her.
“I hope I’m not condemning her nascent run for the presidency,” Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) said, praising Klobuchar to Politico. “She’s too reasonable, too likable, too nice.”
“She wants to achieve a solution and I would hope that’s not a disqualifying thing for someone who would like to be president,” said Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) said. “I like her a lot and hope that’s not harmful to her.”
13. Wayne Messam
Wayne Messam — Mayor of Miramar, Florida — has not made any public comments about whether or not he’d work to forge bipartisan consensus.
14. Seth Moulton
Rep. Seth Moulton of Massachusetts has been placed in the top 10 percent of bipartisan legislators.
15. Beto O’Rourke
Former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas) picked up a series of important endorsements that cited his bipartisanship. But it’s also left progressives Democrats concerned that he doesn’t stand for liberal policies.
16. Tim Ryan
Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) has worked with Republicans before in an effort to eliminate neighborhood blight.
17. Bernie Sanders
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders has a long record of working with Republicans to pass important resolutions. Sanders was part of a bipartisan group of lawmakers that censured the administration for supporting the Saudi-led war in Yemen.
“Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and Reps. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.), Mark Pocan (D-Wis.) and Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) renewed their efforts in the Senate and House Wednesday to end U.S. support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen pursuant to the War Powers Resolution.”
18. Eric Swalwell
Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) has a whole section on his website devoted to bipartisan solutions. “While the deficit is on the decline, it remains a national challenge that we have to address head on,” Swalwell writes.
“That’s why I am leading the bipartisan SAVE Act to cut approximately $479 billion in government spending over 10 years by rooting out waste and improving government efficiency. For example, the legislation would save billions by consolidating federal data and requiring federal agencies to implement energy efficiency initiatives. The bill does not cut important programs that invest in our future or serve as part of our safety net.”
19. Elizabeth Warren
Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) is largely seen as the policy-oriented candidate in the race. Warren has worked with Republicans on organ donation legislation.
“Reminding people that they can become organ donors by simply checking a box on their driver’s licenses is one step the government can take to help save lives,”said Senator Warren. “Our bipartisan resolution to make April a time to educate Americans about this option was passed unanimously in the Senate last year, and I hope to see it passed quickly this year too.”
20. Marianne Williamson
Oprah’s spiritual guru Marianne Williamson has said she wants to replace the rancor or partisan infighting and bring back “love” into government.
“Too often we look to others to solve our problems and tell us what to do,” she told Forbes. “It can be a very convenient excuse not to take responsibility for doing what is within our power to make things better.”
21. Andrew Yang
Businessman and tech start-up founder Andrew Yang’s core issue is that the US worker needs help transitioning to a more automatic society. His core solution, universal basic income, would require Republican support.
“At this point, these are bipartisan issues, they’re American issues, and there’s an appetite on both sides of the aisle to try and address them meaningfully,” he said. “I’ve also gotten people from both sides of the aisle say they’re very excited about (universal basic income) as a way to help move our economy forward, so I see it in a similar way.”
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