Amid talk of cooling the harsh rhetoric following the shooting two weeks ago of an Arizona congresswoman, a move is afoot in Congress to show bipartisanship during the annual speech by having Republicans and Democrats sit together, all mixed up, on both sides of the aisle.
Usually, Republicans sit on the right side of the House, and Democrats on the left. While there is no official plan to mix up the seating, individual lawmakers have taken it upon themselves to shake things up.
So Schmidt, who's as conservative as they come, will trade her coveted aisle seat on the Republican side of the chamber for a similar aisle seat on the Democratic side usually claimed by liberal Democratic Rep. Eliot Engel, another reliable early arrival.
"We think that will be our showing of bipartisanship," said Engel, who represents the Bronx in New York.
Bruce Pfaff, a spokesman for Schmidt, said she and Engel are good friends who have traveled together on congressional delegation trips, so when Engel asked if she wanted to swap seats, she thought it was a good idea.
"Even though they are from distant sides of the political spectrum, they felt that this was a step in the right direction to show cooperation and bipartisanship," Pfaff said.
This is giving in to the Democrat and liberal false premise that heated rhetoric caused the Tucson shootings. That is b.s. Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh and John Boehner had as much to do with the tragedy as Jimmy Carter had to do with reviving the American economy in the 1980s. Give me a break. To give in to this false "civility" is basically saying that libs are right and Republicans are hatemongers and accessories to murder.
And, the American people are sick of bipartisanship. What they want is people who will stand up for principle. They don't want stupid and pointless displays with little substance based on false premises.
I admire Jean Schmidt for her accomplishments and her willingness to say tough things and for fighting for her district. But this is simply giving in to hype and false notions.
Also, the dems want there to be a mixture so you can't see how bad they got trounced. Seriously, unwise move, Congresswoman.