Current and Former Members of Congress to Gather for Conference on Bipartisanship

Jun 10, 2010, 15:16 ET from Bipartisan Policy Center

Conference will examine solutions for achieving more bipartisanship and civility in our nation's political discourse

WASHINGTON, June 10 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The U.S. Association of Former Members of Congress, the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) and the U.S. National Archives will host Breaking the Stalemate: Renewing a Bipartisan Dialogue, a conference to explore the causes and effects of partisan gridlock in Washington and outline tangible solutions for changing course.  Current and former Members of Congress, political experts, and journalists will participate in panel discussions throughout the one-day conference.  The conference will be held next Wednesday, June 16, 2010, at the National Archives Building in Washington, D.C.

Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) will deliver the keynote address focusing on the possibilities for bipartisanship in Washington after welcome remarks by David S. Ferriero, Archivist of the United States; former Congressman John J. Rhodes, III, President of the U.S. Association of Former Members of Congress; and Jason Grumet, BPC President.

The first panel, Institutional Perspective: Partisanship and the Political Divide, will address the role of Congressional leadership in developing bipartisan solutions.  The panel brings together former House and Senate leaders with a wealth of experience negotiating across the aisle in order to forge political agreement, including former Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, former Speaker Tom Foley, former Minority Leader Bob Michel, and former Congressman Martin Frost.  Judy Woodruff of PBS will moderate the discussion.

The second panel, Sound Bite News: Political Discourse in the Age of Pundits, Cable and Twitter, will discuss how the 24-hour news cycle, partisan media outlets and social media are affecting our political discourse.  The panel will be moderated by former Congressman Fred Grandy, and will include Charlie Cook, Editor and Publisher of The Cook Political Report and Political Analyst for the National Journal Group; ABC News' Jonathan Karl; Politics Daily's Jill Lawrence; and Stu Rothenberg, Editor and Publisher of The Rothenberg Political Report.

The final panel, Changing Course: Examples and Solutions for Breaking the Stalemate in Washington, will reunite former Members of Congress who served on the Bipartisan Congressional Planning Committee. This panel will include Transportation Secretary and former Congressman Ray LaHood, along with Congressmen David Skaggs, Amo Houghton, and Tom Sawyer.  The panel will be moderated by Jackie Calmes of The New York Times.

WHO: The U.S. Association of Former Members of Congress, the Bipartisan Policy Center and the U.S. National Archives


WHAT: Breaking the Stalemate: Renewing a Bipartisan Dialogue


WHEN:  Wednesday, June 16, 2010


9:15AM – 9:45AM    Registration


9:45AM – 10:00AM   Welcoming Remarks


10:00AM – 10:30AM  Keynote Remarks by Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR)

Followed by questions from the audience


10:45AM – 12:15PM  Panel Discussion One              

Institutional Perspective: Partisanship and the Political Divide


12:15PM – 2:15PM   Lunch Break                                      


2:15PM – 3:45PM    Panel Discussion Two

Sound Bite News: Political Discourse in the Age of Pundits, Cable TV and Twitter


4:00PM – 5:30PM    Panel Discussion Three                

Changing Course: Examples and Solutions for Breaking the Stalemate in Washington


WHERE:  The National Archives Building

                William G. McGowan Theater

                Washington, D.C.


Please use the special events entrance located at 7th Street NW and Constitution Avenue NW



About the Bipartisan Policy Center:

In 2007, former U.S. Senate Majority Leaders Howard Baker, Tom Daschle, Bob Dole, and George Mitchell formed the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) to develop and promote solutions that can attract the public support and political momentum to achieve real progress. Currently, the BPC focuses on issues including health care, energy, national and homeland security, transportation, science and economic policy. For more information, please visit our website: http://www.bipartisanpolicy.org/.

About the U.S. Association of Former Members of Congress:

The U.S. Association of Former Members of Congress (FMC) is a bipartisan group of almost 600 former Senators and Representatives.  The goal of FMC is to promote public service and strengthen democracy via domestic and international programs.  The organization was founded in 1970 and is chartered, but not funded, by the U.S. Congress.  FMC seeks to improve the public's understanding of the role of Congress as a unique institution as well as the crucial importance of representative democracy as a system of government.  Former Members of Congress participate pro bono in projects such as election monitoring abroad, outreach to high school and university students to teach about public service, and supporting severely wounded veterans upon their return from Iraq and Afghanistan.  For more detailed information, please visit the Association's website at www.usafmc.org.

About the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration:

The National Archives and Records Administration is an independent Federal agency that preserves and shares with the public records that trace the story of our nation, government, and the American people. From the Declaration of Independence to accounts of ordinary Americans, the holdings of the National Archives directly touch the lives of millions of people. The National Archives is a public trust upon which our democracy depends, ensuring access to essential evidence that protects the rights of American citizens, documents the actions of the government, and reveals the evolving national experience. www.archives.gov.

SOURCE Bipartisan Policy Center



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http://www.bipartisanpolicy.org