Fixing the debt requires bipartisan cooperation

Maryland Sen. Ben Cardin recently hosted an event in Annapolis to discuss the national debt and how it relates to businesses in the state. It was refreshing to finally hear a member of Congress talk about the need for politicians to work toward a bipartisan solution rather than make absolute statements that feed the flames of partisanship. Senator Cardin's leadership in addressing the issue should be applauded.

At the event, which attracted dozens of concerned citizens, Mr. Cardin spoke highly of the Bowles-Simpson Commission's plan and criticized Congress for the missed opportunity of not giving it an up-or-down vote. As he noted, the plan might not have been perfect, but it was an important jumping-off point for bipartisan discussion.

That's what we need now — a bipartisan plan that works for America. It's also why I joined the Maryland chapter of the Campaign Fix the Debt, a national, nonpartisan advocacy organization that aims to encourage Congress to reach a bipartisan deal.

As the budget negotiations continue, I am hopeful that Mr. Cardin will be able to rally his colleagues to share his bipartisan spirit. Most of the important bills that have been passed in Congress have enjoyed bipartisan support. Let's make fixing the debt the latest.

Jamie Benoit, Annapolis

The writer, a Democrat, is a member of the Anne Arundel County Council.

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