This week, the House easily approved that budget deal between Democrat Patty Murray and Republican Paul Ryan, which did leave out some big programs, but it was the first budget agreement since 2009.
Making the details less important than the fact that it happened at all. So how did it happen? I got a call from Patty Murray at about 9:30 the night she closed the deal with Paul Ryan.
I asked her how she and Ryan managed to get along when so many others could not.
“We established early on that we shared a goal and the goal was to stop governing by crisis and to show this country that a democracy can work,” says Murray.
Does this represent a change just in the way these two work or is there a larger shift going on?
“We hope that we set a good example. We I think both hope that this is a blueprint for other agreements,” says Murray.
If we’re looking at this as a blueprint, I would note that during the negotiation both of them kept radio silence. Not too difficult for Senator Murray who has a low profile. A little more difficult for Ryan who ran for vice president. But they did, and were successful.
For all the 24/7 news coverage intended to keep them honest, it seems the real work gets done where the red light doesn’t shine.