It's hard to know what to say about the Sen. Pat Toomey-brokered compromise on gun background checks. Regarding Pennsylvania's junior senator, although I still disagree with him on many things I admire his intelligence and political foresight -- he realized that a majority of his constituents wanted something done and he was smart enough to find what he could do without going against his core beliefs. I think that's how politics is supposed to work. But I understand, and a part of me agrees very strongly with, the New York Daily News crowd that this is a tepid compromise and kind of shameful that this was the best we could do.
But I've decided to look at the gun deal (which I think will pass with the help of "moderate" Northeastern Republicans, but we'll see...) from the glass-half-full perspective, and here are two reasons why. First, the National Rifle Association has won every single fight since 1994, and this whacked-out posse of conspiracy theorists needed to lose on something, to hopefully set the stage for much better gun legislation down the road. I don't think it will take much for these wicked witches to start melting.
Second, and even more important, what's happening in Washington right now is one more indication that the events of November 2012 is breaking up the logjam and that the U.S. body politic is moving with all deliberate speed in a good direction -- maybe not my leftist fantasy agenda, but a common-sense center-left agenda that reflects where a lot of the American electorate is at right now. Republicans like Toomey and my own congressman Pat Meehan have see where the nation is headed and have learned that they can lead, follow or get out of the way.
It may have been Yogi Berra or maybe Yogi Bear or someone else who said this, but a win is a win is a win.
So have a great weekend!