WASHINGTON, Sept. 29 (UPI) -- Hearings into the recent hurricane response are giving congressional moderates new opportunities to lead in the increasingly partisan U.S. Congress.
Moderates such as Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, Sen. Joseph Lieberman, D-Conn., and Rep. Tom Davis, R-Va., find their experiences with working across the political aisle valuable as Congress faces a slew of tough issues, the Christian Science Monitor reported Thursday.
The end of the federal fiscal year is Friday, and Congress must decide how to factor Gulf Coast recovery into a budget already saddled with deficit spending. In addition, investigations into the government response to the recent hurricanes -- inquiries led by Collins and Davis -- need moderating influence so they don't devolve into partisan finger-pointing.
Marshall Wittman, a former conservative activist now with the Democratic Leadership Council, told the Monitor: "Because of the relatively narrow margins that divide the parties, moderates can still broker deals that have a great moderating influence on issues form tax cuts to judicial fights."