By Fareed Zakaria
I have been described as a centrist. And I freely admit to believing that neither side of the political spectrum has a monopoly on wisdom or virtue. But sometimes, reality points firmly in one direction. Watching the machinations in Washington over the last two weeks, it is now impossible to talk about how both political parties are to blame for the country’s gridlock.
Consider what just happened on immigration, an issue ripe for resolution. A majority of Americans support granting citizenship to illegal immigrants — by 81 percent in the most recent CNN poll — as well as enhanced border controls. The leadership of the Republican Party in Congress talked about a comprehensive reform package that would create a lengthy waiting time for citizenship — 13 years — and couple this with tougher enforcement. Most Democrats were willing to accept this compromise.
But it became clear to the Republican leadership that even this would be unacceptable for many tea party Republicans.