Those who will be at the Jan. 7 session at the University of Oklahoma say that if the likely nominees of the two parties do not pledge to "go beyond tokenism" in building an administration that seeks national consensus, they will be prepared to back Bloomberg or someone else in a third-party campaign for president.Dems like Sam Nunn, Chuck Robb, and David Boren will be there, as will Republicans like Chuck Hagel, John Danforth, and Christine Todd Whitman. Boren, who will host the meeting at the university, apparently has a deadline in mind, telling the Times that Democrats and Republicans would have two months to "formally embrace bipartisanship and address the fundamental challenges facing the nation."
Now, I try not to be reflexive about efforts like these. I don't reject bipartisan proposals out of hand, and if a handful of former office holders have some constructive policy ideas, they should certainly be encouraged to be part of the public debate.
But the closer one looks at this Bloomberg group initiative, the more this looks like bipartisanship for the sake of bipartisanship. Worse, it's a solution in search of a problem.