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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

John Romano column: Farewell to David Jolly, a congressman willing to compromise

Rep. David Jolly, alongside with his wife Laura, gives his concession speech Tuesday night at the Vinoy Renaissance in St. Petersburg after losing his re-election bid.

Dirk Shadd | Times

Rep. David Jolly, alongside with his wife Laura, gives his concession speech Tuesday night at the Vinoy Renaissance in St. Petersburg after losing his re-election bid.

10

November

Tampa Bay Times columnist John Romano reflects on David Jolly's re-election loss in a column today. Here's an excerpt:

This loss belonged to everyone who believes in compromise.

To everyone who believes that people matter more than partisanship, and that finding common ground is more noble than cultivating needless divisions.

"We never played it safe,'' Jolly said after his concession speech. "I wasn't interested in playing it safe just to protect my political future.''

Just to be clear, bucking the system did not cost Jolly his seat in Congress. If anything, his willingness to cross party leaders might have kept him competitive in a district that had been redrawn in a way that virtually guaranteed defeat for any Republican.

Yet, no matter the cause, the result is the same.

Congress has lost a rare member willing to step across the aisle. An incumbent who wanted to rein in Washington's obsession with fundraising. A conservative willing to talk about gun reforms and climate change. A Republican who saw Democrats as colleagues and not enemies.

We agree on very little, Jolly and I. And chances are Crist will pursue policies that are more my speed. But this isn't an argument for conservative or progressive views.

This is a lament for civility.

[Last modified: Thursday, November 10, 2016 9:00am]

    

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