The Columns

10/9: Panel Brought Together by W&L and UVa to Discuss a Post-Partisan Presidency

— by on October 9th, 2008

Can’t we all just get along?

That may be the most important question facing President McCain or President Obama. Both candidates have promised to be “post-partisan” presidents. But, given the issues Americans face on the economy, health care and foreign policy, can either one deliver on this promise? And, as political parties have played a critical role in the development of American democracy, is it even sensible to pine for a post-partisan age?

A special panel, brought together by Washington and Lee University and the University of Virginia, will try to get to the heart of these issues on Friday, Oct. 24 at 1:30 p.m., at UVa.’s Miller Center of Public Affairs on the UVa. campus in Charlottesville.

It is free and open to the public. Seating is limited so please RSVP to Anne Mulligan, coordinator for academic programs, 434-243-8726 or, to insure a spot.

The event – titled “Now What?: Can the President Rise Above Partisan Polarization to Govern Effectively?” – is being presented by the Miller Center’s Governing America in a Global Era (GAGE) Program and co-funded by the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation. Sid Milkis, assistant director for Academic Programs at the Center and White Burkett Miller Professor of Politics at UVa, will moderate the panel, which features an all-star line-up of political observers:

This event is a follow-up to W&L’s inaugural Politics-Media symposium which was held last spring at the National Press Club in Washington. Then, the subject was “Uncivil Wars: What’s So Bad About Political Partisanship?” Milkis was among the panelists at the Press Club and decided to return the favor by hosting the Miller Center event.

The event will be webcast live and archived online at