The election of President Barack Obama marks a new day for the United States Congress and the nation as a whole. Despite one's political views, liberal or conservative, this country is facing some of the toughest challenges of our generation. Last month more than 500,000 Americans lost their job, making it tougher to make ends meet, all while our economy sinks deeper into a recession.
While we all know the enormity of challenges we face, we must recognize the need for innovative solutions that place our country back on track. Congress is not debating hypotheticals, rather legislating policies that directly impact our daily lives and the future of our families. This great challenge, this great opportunity, must not be squandered by petty partisanship.
E pluribus unum, Latin for "out of many, one", has been a motto of the United States since its inception. We are a proud and diverse nation, built of many peoples, races, ancestries and ideas.
It is incumbent on President Obama and the 111th Congress to be mindful of this. We are one people and one nation, but far too often, the politics of Washington handicap our ability to implement the very best ideas to fix the myriad of problems we face.
Of course political posturing and partisanship will never disappear completely. Nevertheless my hope is to work together toward solutions regardless of who gets the credit.
President Obama recently said that he welcomes input from lawmakers of both parties. "If Members of Congress have good ideas," he said, "then I'm going to accept it." This is a good first step.
While I will continue to fight hard to uphold the priorities of our district, I am committed to working with the new Administration and Congress as we craft policy which will lead to a more prosperous and hopeful America.