Congress will have to compromise - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

Congress will have to compromise

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The presidential and congressional races are over but, in some respects, nothing has changed.

Some things will have to change.  We have the same president, Democrats still control the Senate and Republicans still control the House of Representatives.

But somehow, lawmakers have to move the nation forward with the same people who haven't been able to get along.

President Barack Obama won a second term with fewer votes than he won for a first term; that's never happened before.  And President Obama seemed to realize this close victory comes with a dose of humility.  He told a cheering crowd during his victory speech, "In the coming weeks and months, I am looking forward to reaching out and working with leaders of both parties to meet challenges we can only solve together."

Ohio Ninth District congresswoman, Marcy Kaptur, won an impressive victory and will return to Capitol Hill along with fellow Ohio delegation mate, Republican House Speaker John Boehner.

Kaptur believes Boehner has been willing to compromise but that his fellow Republicans have been reluctant, but she says, that will change.  "They've heard from the public that they want action and they don't want all that in-fighting," she told 13abc.

Even in defeat, Republican presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, touched on the compromise theme, telling his supporters during his concession speech, Tuesday night, "Our leaders have to reach across the aisle to do the people's business."

That means incumbents like Fifth District congressman, Republican Bob Latta, have to compromise.   But Latta says, with big issues like defense cuts and tax increases coming, the president has to make the first move.  Latta told 13abc, "(The president's) got to be at the table and not just send us things and say accept it.  that's where a compromise comes in; it's a 2-way street."  

President Obama won a close, but clear, victory.

But political science professor Melissa Miller from BGSU says he has no mandate.

And she says the fact that the same players will be in Washington over the next two years provides an opportunity.  Miller told 13abc reporter Bill Hormann, "If there had been a big shake up then I think there'd have been real uncertainty then about what might happen and how this might affect how the president and congress try to deal with this fiscal crisis that we are now facing."   

So ironically, the fact there isn't wholesale change means the players know each other and could work better toward compromise.

But debt and spending and taxes are huge issues and the two parties have very different principles on those matters.

Last night's election did not change that.  

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