Raised Ceiling, Raised Hopes

3 Aug

While I (and most of America) braced this week for the potential of an economic meltdown and our government ending up leading by example for all the “bad borrowers” out there, it seems that partisanship ultimately reigned and our representatives came grudgingly to an agreement to ensure that the country will continues to pay all its bills.

But “Sugar-Coated Satan Sandwich” notwithstanding, I do believe that the most poignant and heartwarming moment on the floor of the House this week would have to be the “surprise” appearance and yea vote of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords on Monday.  Since being viciously attacked at a local Arizona meet & greet where she suffered a debilitating shot to the head last January, Gifford’s colleagues and constituents (and the millions of horrified Americans who’ve sent the politician prayers and well-wishes over the past seven months) were unsure of when or if she’d be returning to Washington.  Clearly, it was the call for fiscal responsibility that Gabby believed she most needed to answer, even if only in symbolic fashion.

Appearing in the House during the perfunctory undertakings of the session, Giffords brought a sort of halt to the proceedings as she was greeted by thunderous applause and (if the pictures are any indicator) a truly emotional standing ovation from both sides of the aisle as she smiled and waved.

“I strongly believe that crossing the aisle for the good of the American people is more important than party politics. I had to be here for this vote.” Giffords said in a statement.

The nod to bipartisanship was not lost on Gifford Aide C.J. Karamargin:

 “The congresswoman has always been convinced that Washington can work together and find common ground when they set aside partisanship and work for the common good.  She’s believed that to be true when it comes to border issues, when it comes to defense issues, and when it comes to economic issues. These are principles that she has lived by from the very beginning.”

Intentional or not, I believe that this week, Gabby Giffords has been the poster child for political symbolism.  Not only were she and her colleagues forced to work together to make some tough decisions for the good of the American people, but her return to D.C. also affected a sort of rousing sentiment amongst political adversaries that proved that beneath the wheeling and dealing, there is still a sense of compassion and humanity in the hearts of our representatives.

Just when we thought they’d secured VIP seating on the Bullet Train to Hell, they go and show us a softer, more responsible side…however short-lived that may be.

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