Strange Bedfellows, Indeed
Welp, what are we all to make of this?
Mr. Gingrich and Mrs. Clinton have a lot more in common now that they have left behind the politics of the 1990’s, when she was a symbol of the liberal excesses of the Clinton White House and he was a fiery spokesman for a resurgent conservative movement in Washington.
Beyond the issue of health care, Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Gingrich have forged a relatively close relationship working on a panel the Pentagon created to come up with ways to improve the nation’s military readiness, according to people close to them.
Mr. Gingrich says he has been struck by how pro-defense Mrs. Clinton has turned out to be at a time when other Democrats have criticized President Bush’s decision to go to war against Iraq. He chalked that up to her experience in the White House, where her husband, as commander in chief, had to deal with grave national security matters.
“Unlike most members of the legislature, she has been in the White House,” he said. “She’s been consistently solid on the need to do the right thing on national defense.”
It was, in fact, during one of the defense panel’s meetings in Norfolk that Mr. Gingrich suggested to her that they join efforts to push legislation on an area of mutual concern: the need to spur greater online exchanges of medical information among patients, doctors, health insurers and other medical experts. That, in turn, led to the press conference that both attended this week.
Political opportunism on both parts? Or could there be something to the idea that a personal relationship can overcome too-often hyperbolic partisan rhetoric? I actually think its encouraging. Though I must confess that there is no way I could trust Mrs. Clinton as President. Nonethless, when she’s right (as she has been on military affairs), she’s right.