These two public servants were former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, a Republican, and former President Bill Clinton, a Democrat. Whether a person agreed with them or not, it can be said that these two former officials proved during their time in office that people from different backgrounds and political philosophies can come together for the common good of improving the lives of citizens.
Sure there were a lot of things they did not agree on, but they found common ground. That in turn resulted in accomplishments in many areas that this country had not witnessed in a long time, from welfare reform to balancing the budget.
When the atmosphere in Washington, D.C. is partisan and stalemates occur, often it results in very little accomplished for the citizenry.
During my time in municipal government when dealing with state or federal programs, there was then-Governor Ronnie Musgrove's administration on the state level, and on the federal level was then-President George W. Bush's administration. Musgrove was a Democrat, and Bush was a Republican.
When I dealt with either I thought about the Lott/Clinton style of working with people of different philosophies in reaching a positive result for the citizens. Sure no one should compromise their principles, but when a common goal can be reached for the benefit of the people it will result in a substantive achievement for better government.
After the federal elections this year, it will be interesting to see if in Washington we have leaders who will be willing to work across the aisle to make a difference and find common ground like Trent Lott and Bill Clinton did back in the nineties.
Whether it is the halls of congress, state legislature, the courthouse or city hall, it is amazing what can be achieved when working together using a bipartisan approach.
Ken Strachan is a former mayor of North Carrollton and serves as Carroll County coroner.