By Editor-in-chief
updated 12/13/2006 11:20:40 AM ET 2006-12-13T16:20:40

In the aftermath of another bitter election, it’s become fashionable to promise voters a new spirit of bipartisanship. Not so fast. It seems some Americans don’t want it.

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“Bipartisanship for its own sake just doesn’t seem to make sense to me,” wrote OddjobXL during an online discussion about the merits of easing polarization. “I’d like people to come together. Heck, they could all come together around the president’s ‘stay the course’ Iraq strategy. That would be partisan, wouldn’t it? But it would still be stupid.”

A fellow community member who goes by the username “Attitudegrrl,” echoed the sentiment. “Oddjob has a good point. Argument (partisanship) can be constructive if it gets ideas out in the open by requiring those involved to articulate their positions and reasoning behind them,” she wrote. “Conflict can also inspire compromise.”

Still, many others said they yearn for a more cooperative tone in Washington. “When two parties come off an election making claims that the other one will make mistakes or not live up to the expectations of voters, it looks more like a game of competition rather than an effort to solve problems,” wrote Badger38. “I have to believe that politicians from both parties would think much better of themselves if they made a concerted effort to resolve issues in a cooperative manner.”

“Bipartisanship is always a key in foreign policy,” wrote AJH. “A unified United States on an issue gives those nations dealing with us certainty that the deal last more than eight years.”

Lobo1963, writing for an online community dedicated to smart, civil discussions about issues, said, “I think any real chance for bipartisanship has to start with the assumption that nobody has all the answers and respect for another point of view, even if you might disagree.”

Join the conversation on bipartisanship at

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