There is not a liberal America and a conservative America. There is the United States of America. There is not a Black America and a White America and Latino America and Asian America — there’s the United States of America.
Here is O'Rourke's effort, the words that Pitts finds quaint and naive:
Whatever our differences, where you live, who you love, to whom you pray, for whom you voted in the last election — let those differences not define us or divide us at this moment. Before we are anything else, we are Americans first.
Former president Barack Obama said Saturday that he is concerned about “rigidity” among some liberal Democrats who take aim at others in the party for “straying from purity on the issues.”
His remarks come amid an internal debate in the party over the most effective path to take in challenging President Trump for the White House in 2020. Democrats recaptured the House in November in large part due to a surge of liberal energy. But as some have embraced sweeping proposals such as Medicare-for-all and the Green New Deal plan to combat climate change, others have balked, arguing that the party should take a more centrist approach.
At a town-hall-style event hosted by the Obama Foundation in Berlin, the former president was asked about the art of compromise.
He told the crowd of mostly young people that, in politics as well as in the civic arena, “you have to recognize that the way we’ve structured democracy requires you to take into account people who don’t agree with you.”
“One of the things I do worry about sometimes among progressives in the United States — maybe it’s true here as well — is a certain kind of rigidity, where we say, ‘Oh, I’m sorry. This is how it’s going to be,’” Obama said.
He lamented that Democrats sometimes create “what’s called a ‘circular firing squad,’ where you start shooting at your allies because one of them is straying from purity on the issues.”
“When that happens, typically the overall effort and movement weakens. . . . You can’t set up a system in which you don’t compromise on anything. But you also can’t operate in a system where you compromise on everything; everything’s up for grabs. That requires a certain amount of internal reflection and deliberations.”