Lugar, Hamilton to discuss political civility

To completely understand civility in politics, one must understand the interactions of political figures.

President Linda Bennett described the House of Representatives as a majoritarian body where minority political parties are not included in actions and the Senate is a deliberative body, where one Senator can halt the workings.

Former Senator Richard Lugar and former Congressman Lee Hamilton stand out in both the Senate and Congress by working to better the nation using civility to work with opposing parties.

Lugar and Hamilton will have a moderated discussion on the topic of civility in politics.

The discussion will take place at 6:30 p.m March 23, in Carter Hall. Bennett will moderate the event with guests having the opportunity to ask questions to Lugar and Hamilton.

The Shield reached out to Senator Lugar twice and Congressman Hamilton five times for interview on March 14 and 15 without response.

When passing judgements or making decisions, both Hamilton and Lugar reach out to the other side of the political spectrum, Bennett said.

“I think we have in our modern society become very focused on rights, but less focused on obligations,” Bennett said. “The willingness to engage in a conversation and to listen…the willingness to take the time to learn more about your own position and to learn about the other person’s position.”

To Bennett, both Hamilton and Lugar have done stellar work in recognizing rights and obligations and are willing to hear out other issues that affect their work.

Both men received the congressional Medal of Freedom, which is given to men and women who have exemplified the conduct and effort that protects the best characteristics of democracy, Bennett said.

“It’s the highest honor a president can give a civilian,” Bennett said.

Thanks to their political experience and keen observation of what is going on, they are able to decide what issues need attention and address them.

To her, both Lugar and Hamilton understand people must come together in the political system for the greater good and are both recognized for that ability.

Lugar was a significant player in U.S. foreign policy, having co-sponsored the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act, which granted permanent residency to undocumented immigrants.

Hamilton has significant experience in fiscal politics by chairing many committees such as the House Committee on Foreign Affairs and the Joint Committee on Printing.

When organizing this discussion, Bennett said she had no idea some of the disruptions on the political campaigns would be happening, such as the riots seen on coverage of certain Trump rallies.

Because of this, college campuses are being affected with people chanting Trump’s name and others counter-chanting.

With the political climate as it is, Bennett said this is the time to have a discussion on civility in politics.

“It’s truly an honor to have these gentlemen come and talk on this topic,” Bennett said.