It's especially gratifying to see Democrats Schumer and Durbin as part of the gang because they are in leadership. Robert Menendez has been around for a long time and Michael Bennet is a welcome new face.
The Republicans have two of their old war horses in McCain and Graham plus young super star Rubio and the Libertarian leaning Jeff Flake.
Wow. On the Senate side no less! Do you think we'll ever seen anything similar in the House? Where a Tea Party conservative could sit down with a moderate and work with the progressives? That will be the day. Well, maybe if the Senate can lead by example... It's better than leading from behind.
The next challenge will be moving things forward. Graham has already been accused of doing his part out of political expediency. He has to face re-election in 2014. Somewhere along the line they are all going to face this accusation, especially when they begin to flesh things out.
Unfortunately political expedience seems to trump what's needed more often than not. I wonder if somewhere along the way these eight have come to realize the voters are sick and tired of the sniping and nit picking and want to something accomplished regardless of political expediency. One can only hope.
The Framework is vague in some areas and quite detailed in others. I hope they will be willing to take it bit by bit rather than all in one fell swoop to get it passed. Hopefully, too, it will end up simple enough that not only will they be able to read it before passing it but that we will too. A real plus would see an end to monstrous bills that don't become clear until after passage.
For now, however, it's a start. These gangs have been formed before and then fade away. This is a window of opportunity when the parties have some freedom to stretch without fear of reprisal from the White House. There shouldn't be any in the first place, but Congress is represented as two houses of fear.
Whatever sparked this, hallelujah! I hope it's habit forming. I also realize the amount of political courage it has taken. Really. Too bad it's so difficult to ferret out!