Mitt Romney’s success as Massachusetts governor will help him break the gridlock in Washington as President of the United States, Artur Davis, a former four-term Democratic member of the Congressional Black Caucus, tells Newsmax.TV.
“When Mitt Romney was governor, Democrats had 90 percent of the seats in the Massachusetts legislature. A very liberal state, a state with a very tough Democratic Party that’s used to winning political battles – and Mitt Romney had virtually no Republican infrastructure to sustain and to support him at all,” Davis, who recently joined the Republican Party, tells Newsmax in an exclusive interview at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Denver.
“Despite that, he managed to get a healthcare bill done with only two votes against him. Despite that, he managed to make Massachusetts the number one state in the country in education – and he managed to launch economic development initiatives that had Massachusetts’ unemployment rate below 4 or 5 percent when he left office.
“The reality is everything that Obama has tried and failed to do with respect to constructing a bipartisan coalition, Mitt Romney’s already done it in a tougher political environment,” he said.
Davis, who represented Alabama’s 7th congressional district as a Democrat from 2003 to 2011, stepped down after losing in a Democratic gubernatorial primary. He joined the Republican Party this summer and spoke at the Republican National Convention in August in Tampa, Fla.
He said that President Barack Obama was “the only president in my lifetime who has had no success whatsoever in reaching out to the other side. It just hasn’t happened.
“Every other president in my lifetime, Democrat or Republican, has managed to find a set of issues where they overcame gridlock so they got things done. Nixon figured out how to do it. Clinton figured out how to do it. Carter figured out how to do it, sometimes. Bush figured out how to do it.
“President Obama has simply not been able to build a bridge to the other side. When someone, as he did, ran four years ago saying that his major calling card was stopping the gridlock, turning the page, who knew that he meant turning the page back to a time when you had complete partisanship in this country and no capacity to work together at all?
“I would argue that we’re at our most partisan than probably Harry Truman’s time in the White House.”
A strong supporter of stricter voter identification laws, Davis backed a decision by a Pennsylvania judge that blocked the state’s photo ID law for voters. The judge said state officials could not adequately ensure that people could easily obtain the necessary identification by Election Day.
“Here’s the reality: 70 percent of Americans support voter ID laws. Most Democrats, most African Americans, most Latinos, most young people,” Davis said. “The only people who seem to be threatened by voter ID laws are people who are active organizers for the Democratic Party or people who are connected to certain special-interest groups in New York and Washington, D.C.
“If voter ID laws are this great effort to suppress minority votes and suppress the votes of young people, then why would Alabama’s voter ID law be cleared by the Department of Justice? Why was Virginia’s voter ID law cleared by the Department of Justice? Why would Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, a liberal, uphold Indiana’s voter ID law several years ago?
“Voter ID laws will consistently survive appellate court scrutiny, and they will survive Supreme Court scrutiny if that results, because they just don’t constitute a burden on a society who are regularly asked to whip out our ID. These laws are consistently good, reasonable laws that most Americans favor.”
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