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Michael Bennet's plea for "a more rational conversation" about healthcare

As Andrew Romanoff was announcing his candidacy for the U.S. Senate yesterday, Michael Bennet, the Bill Ritter appointee he's challenging for the position, was in Washington, D.C., doing his best to talk about other things. Here, Bennet appears at a small rally organized by PICO National Network, an assemblage of faith-based community organizations that want healthcare reform. In his brief remarks, Bennet doesn't take the usual tack of praising everyone on all sides of the issue for their passion and participation, instead speaking plainly about the sound and fury that's echoed across an often angry summer. "We've had a political debate over the last several months that hasn't been constructive," he said. "People at home watch this on their televisions... and they say to themselves, 'I hate the status quo, but how are these guys going to make it any better, based on the quality of the debate?'"

That's a mighty good question. But Bennet's wish to have "a more rational conversation" isn't likely to be granted. For the most extreme obstructionists, after all, irrational conversations have been working pretty damn well.

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts