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George Mitchell

George John Mitchell is the American special envoy to the Middle East for the Obama administration. A Democrat, Mitchell was a United States Senator who served as the Senate Majority[…]

How has Washington DC changed since you arrived?

 

Question: How has Washington changed since your arrival?

George Mitchell: Well, it’s changed dramatically, but of course, change has been the norm throughout American life, throughout our history, not just in politics, so it would be really surprising if it hadn’t changed. That would be news. I think most people think that it has deteriorated- that’s probably a fair assessment, but the process didn’t begin in the last few years. You go back and look at politics in the early years of our country, it was quite rough and tumble. I think what has made it seem more so and 

probably be more so, is the manner of communication, the electronic communication, particularly television, which is now ubiquitous, has had a profound effect, I think, upon not just political life, but all of life. I think it’s a real mistake to look at politics as something separate and apart from the rest of society. It’s a part of our society. It’s influenced by the same factors which affect other parts of society. And so, yeah, I think it has probably gotten a little rougher and more partisan in recent years.