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Peterson, Oberstar ranked most bipartisan in U.S. House

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Peterson, Oberstar ranked most bipartisan in U.S. House
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Northern Minnesota's two representatives are among the U.S. House's most bipartisan members, a Capitol Hill newspaper said Tuesday.

Reps. Collin Peterson of the 7th District and Jim Oberstar of the 8th District -- both Democrats -- ranked in the Top 10 of Democrats easiest to work with in a survey by The Hill.

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Peterson is chairman of the House Agriculture Committee while Oberstar is chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. Both are long-time congressmen, Peterson gaining office in 1991 and Oberstar in 1975.

The two were the only Midwest Democrats on the list,

By contrast, Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-6th District, was ranked as the fifth-most partisan Republican in the U.S. House.

Over the last couple of months, The Hill asked more than 100 House lawmakers to name the hardest and easiest members to work with, the newspaper said. Democrats were asked about Republicans and Republicans were asked about Democrats. Questions about the least bipartisan members were posed on a not-for-attribution basis so that lawmakers could discuss their views frankly.

Not surprisingly, the survey found House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., as the most partisan Democrat. The most partisan Republican title went to Rep. Tom Price, R-Ga., who heads the conservative Republican Study Committee.

House Energy and Commerce Chairman Henry Waxman, D-Calif., was deemed the second-most partisan Democrat behind Pelosi, The Hill said.

Oddly, Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., made both lists -- most partisan (No. 4) and most non-partisan Democrats lists.

"Several panel chairmen were lauded as bipartisan, including Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson (D-Minn.), Armed Services Committee Chairman Ike Skelton (D-Mo.), Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Edolphus Towns (D-N.Y.) and Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Jim Oberstar (D-Minn.)," The Hill said.

The 10 Democratic legislators who made the most-bipartisan list include both liberals and centrists, while the GOP list is composed mostly of middle-of-the-road members.

Republicans who made the most-bipartisan list included Reps. Mica, Ron Paul (Texas), Jones, John McHugh (N.Y.) and Steven LaTourette (Ohio), The Hill said.

bswenson@bemidjipioneer.com

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Pioneer staff reports
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