- For a Republican, in power: Political cover. ("See - they supported it too.")
- For a Republican, out of power: The ability to derail.
- For a Democrat, in power: Spending forever arguing vs. getting something done.
- For a Democrat, out of power: Compromising - usually, your beliefs. ("I got what I could.")
- If you're anyone else: A train wreck that means you'll likely not be heard.
Let's be clear: What's being called "bipartisanship" now, makes as much sense as a scientist accepting a debate with a creationist - at *best* it's a waste of time.
Though it can be more insidious; an attempt to mire, delay, drag down, suck the energy out of... - just look at our so-called "debate" about healthcare. There certainly are critical things to debate, though the vast amount of energy spent is not debate at all, but a naked attempt to maintain the status quo - of healthcare's overriding goal being, not healthcare, but profit.
So, what to do?
Here's what not to do: What the Bush (II) administration did; bulldoze anyone who wasn't 100% signed on to your version of the truth. They certainly got things done - in the same way Mussolini made the trains run on time.
So what's the "happy medium"?
Certainly everyone should have a chance to be heard - for a time. And after that time, it's necessary to take stock and move to the next phase - actually getting something done.
There's nothing impolite or non-inclusinve about this - we have limited time in the same way we have limited money.
This is what governing is: Actually getting something done.