Cornell to launch new bipartisan publication led by former Rep. Steve Israel

Cornell to launch new bipartisan publication led by former Rep. Steve Israel
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Cornell University on Thursday will launch the first edition of a new publication focused exclusively on bipartisan proposals from Democrats and Republicans at all levels of government.

The Bipartisan Policy Review will require that all articles be co-authored by at least one Republican and one Democrat, providing a platform for members of Congress to highlight legislative efforts that have support on both sides of the aisle.

The publication will be overseen by former Rep. Steve IsraelSteven (Steve) J. IsraelThe Hill's Campaign Report: Colorado, Utah primary results bring upsets, intrigue The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - As virus concerns grow, can it get worse for Trump? The Hill's Campaign Report: Democrats zero in on health care as Obamacare lawsuit nears key deadline MORE (D-N.Y.), head of Cornell’s Institute of Politics and Global Affairs, which first shared the announcement with The Hill. He said the platform has its roots in his time on Capitol Hill.

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“When I left Congress in 2017, virtually anywhere I went, people would ask me about the polarization and the partisanship in Congress. I would explain that there is a significant amount of bipartisan cooperation, but nobody believed it,” he told The Hill.

The House Center Aisle Caucus, a bipartisan group co-founded by Israel and now-former Rep. Tim JohnsonTimothy (Tim) Peter JohnsonCornell to launch new bipartisan publication led by former Rep. Steve Israel Trump faces tough path to Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac overhaul Several hurt when truck runs into minimum wage protesters in Michigan MORE (R-Ill.) in 2005, also acted as a model for the Bipartisan Policy Review. 

“We would pick an issue, and instead of focusing on our disagreements, we would spend a couple of hours exploring where we could agree. And so, I am taking that concept and using it as a basis for the Bipartisan Policy Review,” Israel said.

Israel, an opinion contributor to The Hill who served as chairman of House Democrats’ campaign arm in Congress, said he hopes the platform will “prove to people that there are opportunities for Democrats and Republicans to work together in Congress.”

Bipartisanship on Capitol Hill has proved hard to come by in recent years, particularly with a divided Congress. But there have been bright spots, namely last month’s passage of coronavirus relief bills that drew overwhelming support from both parties. Still, partisan politics has made it more difficult to move forward with additional relief measures.

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The first edition of the biannual publication from Cornell will feature nine members of Congress — Reps. Jim Banks (R-Ind.), Jaime Herrera BeutlerJaime Lynn Herrera BeutlerHispanic Caucus endorses Washington Latina House candidate Cornell to launch new bipartisan publication led by former Rep. Steve Israel Campaigns face attack ad dilemma amid coronavirus crisis MORE (R-Wash.), Danny K. Davis (D-Ill.), Josh GottheimerJoshua (Josh) GottheimerThe Hill's Campaign Report: Florida's coronavirus surge raises questions about GOP convention New Jersey Rep. Gottheimer wins House primary New Jersey incumbents steamroll progressive challengers in primaries MORE (D-N.J.), French HillJames (French) French HillPPP application deadline should be extended and fixes made to program to keep recovery going Financial firms facing serious hacking threat in COVID-19 era How lawmaker ties helped shape Fed chairman's COVID-19 response MORE (R-Ark.), Derek KilmerDerek Christian KilmerDemocrats debate how and when to get House back in action Cornell to launch new bipartisan publication led by former Rep. Steve Israel Tech groups call on Congress to boost state funds for cybersecurity during pandemic MORE (D-Wash.), Barbara LeeBarbara Jean LeeState legislatures consider US Capitol's Confederate statues House eyes votes to remove symbols of Confederates from Capitol Nina Turner addresses Biden's search for a running mate MORE (D-Calif.), Tom ReedThomas (Tom) W. ReedThe Hill's Coronavirus Report: Rep. Rodney Davis says most important thing White House can do on COVID-19 is give consistent messaging; US new cases surpass 50k for first time The Athletic lays off 46 staffers as pandemic hits media industry A quiet, overlooked revolution in congressional power MORE (R-N.Y.) and John SarbanesJohn Peter Spyros SarbanesPelosi, Democrats press case for mail-in voting amid Trump attacks Cornell to launch new bipartisan publication led by former Rep. Steve Israel An inclusive democracy Demands DC statehood MORE (D-Md.) — as well as former Rep. Connie Morella (R-Md.), and cover topics such as securing elections, reforming campaign finances and overhauling education in prisons.

Some of those lawmakers are members of bipartisan caucuses such as the Problem Solvers Caucus, with co-chairmen Gottheimer and Reed; the House Entrepreneurship Caucus, with Hill as a co-chairman; the War Powers Caucus, with Lee as a co-chairwoman; the Bipartisan Congressional Refugee Caucus; and the Global Health Caucus.

“The critical goal is to let people know that in a polarized and partisan environment, it’s not hopeless,” Israel said. “There are Democrats and Republicans who are finding ways to work together on specific issues.”

Israel emphasized the need for bipartisanship during the battle against the deadly coronavirus. To pass any of the coronavirus relief bills, both sides of the aisle had to “come together and compromise.”

That message is expected to be highlighted in a webinar Thursday with Gottheimer and Reed as they talk about their article regarding the need for bipartisanship in a post-COVID-19 world.

“What our institute is doing is trying to move the needle on bipartisan accord where we can,” Israel said. “And over the long term, I’m hoping that it does two things: one, it shows the public that Congress is a place where people can find accord; and two, it validates those members who are working together.”