Obama can learn from Madison and craft a deal

By Rodney K. Smith

Published: Friday, Nov. 9 2012 12:00 a.m. MST

Romney working alone will be insufficient. He should co-chair a powerful bi-partisan committee. Hillary Clinton, who is resigning as Secretary of State, would be a superb co-chair. She has experience in working across the aisle and a strong intellect.

The committee could be made up of respected former Senators such as Olympia Snow, Richard Lugar, and Gordon Smith, on the Republican side. Joseph Lieberman, an independent, might be a good choice. On the Democratic side, Senators like Blanche Lincoln, Evan Bayh, and Bill Bradley might serve.

President Obama, Hillary Clinton and Mitt Romney know far better than I who might serve. If the president assured Clinton and Romney, and others, that their ideas will be taken seriously, they will serve, given their commitment to America.

Madison compromised, built a coalition, providing a solid foundation for our nation. President Obama can do likewise and save us from falling off a financial cliff, by drawing hope from the ideas of a powerful bi-partisan committee of his making.

Rodney K. Smith is a Distinguished Professor of Law at the Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego, California.

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