Monday, Nov. 03, 2008

1. Unite the Country — Or Try To

The winner's immediate priority should be to try to unify the nation. The signals the President-elect sends in the first few days could go a long way toward reminding Americans that, no matter how they may have voted, they're all a part of something larger than themselves. Those words, which usually start at the moment of accepting victory, will have greater meaning if the winner names at least one and possibly more members of his Cabinet from the opposing party. For Obama, keeping Robert Gates as Defense Secretary, even for a year, would be a good start. For McCain, finding a Democrat to serve at his side would be more difficult, but it shouldn't be impossible. (Joe Lieberman, however, no longer counts; Democrats now regard the onetime party standard-bearer as a turncoat and would consider a Lieberman Cabinet position to be an end-zone victory dance by McCain.)