WASHINGTON (May 14, 2014) – The inability of the U.S. Congress to compromise on key issues such as immigration reform, healthcare and government spending will likely continue through President Obama’s second term. This was the message delivered to Realtors® by news anchor and political commentator Chris Matthews, who spoke at today’s Insights and Perspectives with Chris Matthews session at the Realtor® Party Convention & Trade Expo.
Matthews, best known as the talk show host of MSNBC’s Hardball with Chris Matthews, offered his take on why Congress is more partisan than ever and shared his predictions for the upcoming midterm elections and 2016 presidential race.
According to Matthews, partisanship has taken over primary elections. He said when Congressional incumbents campaign against their opponent, they need to exude how far to the political right or left they are to win the election. Neither party worries about being defeated by a moderate candidate; therefore, they run their campaign under the promise of being well-engrained within their party, said Matthews. Once elected into Congress, voting with their party is the safest bet.
“Effective politics needs compromise, and believe it or not, I’ve seen it before – especially during the Reagan administration,” he said. “Like a good marriage, respect and the ability to settle differences is the right path to achieving common goals.”
However, Matthews predicts that partisanship will likely continue after the midterm elections with Republicans gaining five-to-ten seats in the U.S. House and at least a few more in the Senate. He said this will only create more division and will lead to ongoing political gridlock for the rest of President Obama’s second term.
Matthews also believes the 2016 presidential race will be very close, with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton running as the Democrat candidate opposed by either U.S. Sen. Rand Paul or former Florida governor Jeb Bush as the Republican candidate.
“The race is going to start early and be very interesting to watch,” said Matthews. “The key to who wins will come down to battleground states such as Florida and Ohio, and if Republicans have the ability this time to receive votes from minorities in large cities such as Philadelphia, Miami and New York.”
Realtors® this week also attended sessions with numerous government officials and industry experts, including Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan and Federal Housing Administration Commissioner Carol Galante, political strategists David Plouffe and Steve Schmidt, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
The National Association of Realtors®, “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing 1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.
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