Carville: US needs more tales of bipartisanship
© Courtesy Bipartisan Policy Center

James Carville says it’s not just the nation’s capital that needs a lesson in bipartisanship.

“I think people outside Washington need it. I think people in like Shreveport and Sheboygan need to read this book,” the famed Democratic political strategist told ITK, pointing to, City of Rivals: Restoring the Glorious Mess of Political Democracy, the first tome penned by Bipartisan Policy Center President Jason Grumet.

“D.C. runs everything, but if people out there understood it, I think it would have a greater effect,” Carville said Thursday at a book party in his and wife Mary Matalin’s Alexandria, Va., home.

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“The level of frustration over congressional dysfunction is at an appropriately high level,” Grumet said in an interview. “The key is that bipartisanship does not mean abandoning one’s intense political ideals and expectations. It’s a question of whether you can acknowledge that other people have equally intense ideas and try to figure out if there’s a way for you to both advance your goals together.”

So who in D.C. might benefit the most from giving Grumet’s book a read?

“Fortunately the congressional ethics ban does not prevent the gifting of books, so we’re going to try to make it widely available,” the author said with a chuckle.

Carville, who is also a columnist for The Hill, sported a flashy belt at the festive occasion as he hosted guests including former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour (R), former Sen. Tom Daschle (D-S.D.), and former Maine Gov. Jock McKernan (R) with his wife, former Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine).

“It’s actually a snowball belt,” Carville corrected ITK when we inquired about his colorful ice cream cone-emblazoned accessory.

“Snowcones are part of the culture in New Orleans,” the Louisiana native explained. “My daughter bought it for me for Christmas because she knows I love them.”