"Our politics in Congress has become tribal in some ways. We have the tribe of the Democrats and tribe of the Republicans," Bayh said, appearing on CNN's State of the Union with Democrat Jon Corzine, a former New Jersey governor and senator, and Republican Susan Molinari, a former House member from New York.
In discussing partisanship, Molinari said that "women have a tendency to band together a little bit more than the men."
Bayh interjected: "It's testosterone poisoning; it's not our fault."
"You said it. I didn't," Molinari joked in response.
Bayh, who stunned Democrats last week when he announced he will not seek re-election in November, spoke about why he believes Congress can't get much done.
"Well, the culture really has changed," Bayh told CNN Senior Political Correspondent Candy Crowley.
"We have a lot of wonderful people, well-meaning people, but they're trapped in a system that's dysfunctional," said Bayh, whose father also served in the Senate.
Let’s just say Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell didn’t seem all that enthused about the bipartisan, on-camera health care meeting this week. “Yeah. I think in all likelihood I'll be there. We're discussing the sort of makeup of the room and that sort of thing, but… my members will be there and ready to participate.”
Still did we hear the nascent sounds of bipartisanship when the senator was asked if he could support Majority Leader Harry Reid’s jobs bill with its small business tax breaks, “Well, we may well.” Then he said the bill needed to come to the Senate floor so it could be amended. Sic Transit Bipartisanship.
Elsewhere, the nation’s governors, strategically located this weekend in Washington for a meeting, were out in force on the Sunday talks. Raise your hands if you’re surprised California’s Arnold Schwarzenegger said the stimulus bill created jobs in his state and then turned on fellow Republicans in Congress for showing up at ribbon-cuttings for projects funded by the stimulus bill they opposed. He told ABC, “I find it interesting that you have a lot of the Republicans running around and pushing back on the stimulus money and saying this doesn't create any new jobs and then they go out and they do the photo ops and posing with the big check. And they say isn't this great?”
Did somebody put the good governor on the democratic talking points list? Think I’m kidding? Check out what the President said recently.
(CNN) - As coalition and Afghan forces entered the second week of a major offensive against the Taliban in southern Afghanistan, the head of U.S. Central Command warned that the potential loss of lives among U.S. forces in the operation "will be tough."
Gen. David Petraeus said the losses could be comparable to those seen after the 2007 surge of U.S. troops into Iraq.
"They'll be tough. They were tough in Iraq," Petraeus said on NBC's "Meet the Press."
"It's unseemly, to use a tactful term, to see so many people – so many people in office – sit on the sidelines and root for failure," Gov. Deval Patrick, D-Massachusetts, said Sunday on CNN's State of the Union. "I think most Americans, no matter what their political background or political party affiliation if they have one, want their president to succeed."
Obama "does not pretend to have all the answers" and has solicited policy ideas from Republicans, Patrick said.
"I think that the American people are going to hold accountable those who simply sit on the sidelines and root for failure," Patrick said. "We can't afford that anymore."
Patrick also said that, in his view, Obama has focused on the issues that matter to the public: health care, job creation, and the economic pain that has gripped the country since late 2008.
Washington (CNN) – The partisan gridlock gripping Washington endangers already fragile state budgets nationwide, two governors said Sunday.
"We really need Washington to come together, to work on a bipartisan basis and get us out of this," Gov. Jim Douglas, R-Vermont, said Sunday on CNN's State of the Union.
The states are scrambling to fill big fiscal holes for fiscal year 2011, which for most starts on July 1, and face combined budget gaps of $134 billion over the next three years, according to a report released Saturday by the National Governors Association.
"States foresee fiscal year 2011 … to be the most difficult to date, and few see fiscal year 2012 much better," the report stated.
The outlook is made worse by a lack of certainty coming from Washington about how much financial support states can expect from the federal government.
TOPICS: Broken government, trust in government, honesty, opinion of elections and politicians, government as a threat
Full results (pdf)
Eighty-six percent of people questioned in a new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll say that our system of government is broken. (Photo Credit: Getty Images/File)
Washington (CNN) - Americans overwhelmingly think that the government in this country is broken, according to a new national poll. But the CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey, released Sunday morning, also indicates that the public overwhelmingly holds out hope that what's broken can be fixed.
Eighty-six percent of people questioned in the poll say that our system of government is broken, with 14 percent saying no. Of that 86 percent, 81 percent say that the government can be fixed, with 5 percent saying it's beyond repair.
The number of Americans who think the government is broken has grown eight points since 2006. "That increase is highest among higher-income Americans and people who live in rural areas," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Maybe it's just a coincidence, but those are the groups that make up the bulk of the Tea Party activists today."
The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted February 12-15, with 1,023 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points for the overall survey.
–CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.
Washington (CNN) - Although the national economy has reported growth, revenues at the state level continue to deteriorate, and state economies have not seen the worst yet, the governors' association said Saturday.
The National Governors Association released a report Saturday on states' fiscal situation, as the group's conference in Washington began.
"States foresee fiscal year 2011, which starts for most states July 1, 2010, to be the most difficult to date, and few see fiscal year 2012 much better," the report said.
"Unlike the national economy, which witnessed significant growth in the fourth quarter of 2009 ... state fiscal conditions have continued to worsen."
States face combined remaining budget gaps of $134 billion over the next three years, the report said.