Town Square Discussion on Partisanship and Book Signing by Ray LaHood

The only elected Republican selected for President Obama’s Cabinet, former U.S. transportation secretary and congressman Ray LaHood sought to bridge the partisan divide between the new Democratic administration and Republicans on Capitol Hill.

In 2015, LaHood, along with coauthor Dr. Frank H. Mackaman of The Dirksen Congressional Center, released their book Seeking Bipartisanship: My Life in Politics, which has been highly praised by both Democrats and Republicans.

On Sunday, August 13, 2017, LaHood will discuss partisanship in politics. The discussion will be moderated by Rick Pearson, the Chicago Tribune chief political reporter, and is part of Aurora University’s Town Square Series. LaHood will be signing copies of his book after the event. The book can be purchased on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. For more information on the event and to register, click here.

Ray LaHood

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74% Want GOP Lawmakers to Try Seeking Bipartisanship

A Fox News Poll taken Sunday through Tuesday finds that “74 percent want GOP lawmakers to reach out to Democrats and try to find a compromise.  That includes 86 percent of Democrats and 59 percent of Republicans.”

Can the Republicans engage in seeking bipartisanship? One has already done so. The only elected Republican selected for President Obama’s Cabinet, Ray LaHood noted:

“I came to believe, and I still do, that government can be helpful, that government can solve problems, that Democrats and Republicans can work together. This seemed like common sense at the time; only later did I discover how unpopular that view would prove to be.”

For an insider’s account of what it is like to try to reach across the aisles, read LaHood’s book Seeking Bipartisanship: My Life in Politics coauthored with Frank H. Mackaman.

Ray LaHood

Cambria Press Book Highlight: Seeking Bipartisanship

As budget debates continue in Washington, will President Donald Trump’s $1 trillion infrastructure plan be realized or will it fall through? The infrastructure issue is one which President Obama’s administration attempted to address too.

Former Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood was just interviewed on the National Journal about this and he also discussed the problem in his book, Seeking Bipartisanship:

When the new president [Obama] took office, most everyone accepted the need for action on transportation. They knew where the bad roads were. They knew about bad bridges that needed to be fixed. They knew we suffered with outdated transit systems. But we could never figure out a way to pay for the fixes. The administration would not lobby for an increase in the gas tax when it had the votes. Republicans in the House would have blocked the increase once they regained control of the House. The infrastructure bank never gained traction, although it could have supplemented the Highway Trust Fund. We never figured out how to pay for a transportation bill that matched the president’s rhetoric.

Politico has predicted that President Trump’s “hopes for a ‘very bipartisan’ bill are running into the same kinds of political forces that torpedoed the Obamacare repeal.”

Why is bipartisanship so elusive? Secretary LaHood’s book provides a rare inside account of how politics work in Washington. Order Seeking Bipartisanship on Amazon today for this fascinating read into the everyday life of Washington politics.

Ray LaHood

Title: Seeking Bipartisanship: My Life in Politics
Editors: Ray LaHood with Frank H. Mackaman
Publisher: Cambria Press
ISBN: 9781604979053
360 pp.  |   2015   |  Paperback & E-book
Book Webpage:

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Seeking Bipartisanship a Must Now All the More


A recent Pew report noted that “a large majority of the public wants the new president to work closely with members of the opposing party in Congress (76%)” and that “Overall, 50% say it is either very (10%) or somewhat (41%) likely that Donald Trump will work with Democrats in Washington on important issues, while about as many (49%) say they think this is very (20%) or somewhat (29%) unlikely.”

Given the divisive nature of the 2016 presidential election, the objective of seeking bipartisanship is going to be even more difficult–yet more crucial–than ever. It has been done before by Secretary Ray LaHood who wrote the book on it, literally with Frank H. Mackaman.

The book, aptly titled Seeking Bipartisanhip, has been praised by Republicans and Democrats. This fascinating read provides remarkable insights on how Washington works and what needs to change. Order this book on Amazon today and get free shipping!

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First step to #EndTheDivide is #SeekingBipartsanship


“The ideological divide between the parties, enflamed by the sense of partisan superiority claimed by both sides, produced legislative gridlock. There were no winners. We need to get back to an America where Congress solves problems, passes a farm bill, passes an immigration bill, passes tax reform, passes a budget. It is possible. We proved it during Bill Clinton’s administration when a Republican Congress joined a Democratic president to pass three budgets and welfare reform.” – Secretary Ray LaHood and Dr. Frank Mackaman, Seeking Bipartisanship

Secretary Ray LaHood’s C-SPAN Interview about his book “Seeking Bipartisanship”

Ray LaHood C-span Seeking Bipartisanship Cambria Press

Former Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood was on C-SPAN for an interview with Peter Slen about his book, Seeking Bipartisanship: My Life in Politics, coauthored with Dr. Frank H. Mackaman of The Dirksen Congressional Center.

The following are a few snippets from the interview:

On the recent article about his book in The New York Times

“the story that Peter Baker wrote in The New York Times was pretty accurate, but the headline didn’t really reflect my feeling about it [… because] “the president tried very, very hard [on bipartisanship] … I cite a number of examples of that in my book.”

On being selected by President Obama for his Cabinet

“I couldn’t have gotten the job with President Obama had I not been a been a Republican because he was looking for a Republican. And our friendship obviously has endured even since I’ve left the job.”

On what President Obama has accomplished in implementing policy

“It is difficult because under our system of legislation passing, it has to come before Congress, which is an equal brancn of government, separate from the Administration, separate from the Executive branch. We’ve seen how difficult it is for President Obama to enact some legislation that he’s wanted to do … but I give the president credit on: he did pass national health care, he did get us out of Iraq, he’s working very hard on a trade bill, he supported this education reform, the transportation bill. So it can be done, but it has to be done in a bipartisan way. No one of the 435 in the House and no one of 100 senators gets their own way. When Congress solves big problems, when they address big issues, they’re almost always solved in a bipartisan way–with compromise.”

On Vice President Joe Biden,

“I developed a great relationship with Vice President Biden. He’s an endearing friend today because of all the time we spent together trying to get people to work on transportation projects.”

On the worst day of his job as Secretary of Transportation

February 12, 2009 “That was the day of the Colgan air crash in Buffalo, New York, when 49 people boarded a plane with the idea that they were going to arrive in Buffalo safely, like thousands of people do today. … As a result of that, we implemented new rules and regulations on pilot rest … and better training for pilots.

On Paul Ryan as Speaker

“I particularly admire him for stepping up into this very important leadership vacuum and filling the vacuum. … I think Paul is going to be a very strong Speaker. In my book, I talk about one of the real pillars of leadership is listening. And I think Paul is and will be a good listener. He’s already doing that.”

On the 2016 election

“It looks like on the Democratic side Hillary will probably get the nomination.”

Watch the entire interview and order Seeking Bipartisanship from Amazon.

Seeking Bipartisanship Ray LaHood Frank Mackaman Cambria Press publication author review

Cambria Press Publication: Seeking Bipartisanship by Ray LaHood with Frank Mackaman


White House Correspondent for The New York Times, Peter Baker, Interviews Cambria Press Author Secretary Ray LaHood About His New Book, “Seeking Bipartisanship”

Ray LaHood New York Times Cambria Press author review publication book Bipartisanship

Read the article by Peter Baker, White House Correspondent for The New York Times, in which he interviews Cambria Press author Secretary Ray LaHood about his new book, Seeking Bipartisanship, which he coauthored with Dr. Frank H. Mackaman who heads The Dirksen Congressional Center.

Learn more about Seeking Bipartisanship.

ISBN: 9781604979053 · 360pp. (includes photos) · $29.95 – Buy the book.

Seeking Bipartisanship Ray LaHood Frank Mackaman Cambria Press publication author review

Cambria Press Publication: Seeking Bipartisanship by Ray LaHood with Frank Mackaman

This book is in the Cambria Politics, Institutions, and Public Policy in America (PIPPA) Series headed by Scott A. Frisch and Sean Q. Kelly.

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