WITH lawmakers in Washington achieving precious little, cities and the suburbs are increasingly the places where things get done. This at least is the case put forward by Bruce Katz and Jennifer Bradley at the Brookings Institution in their book “The Metropolitan Revolution”, published last year. Local leaders have more real-world problems to contend with and more power to address them. They are also less hindered by political turf battles and relentless campaigns, so they are more likely to take on the kind of big challenges that daunt federal politicians. This means mayors and governors are busily working to kick-start their economies, invest in critical transportation infrastructure and reform education. They are also far more dynamic than the federal government in areas such as immigration, climate change and obesity.
Does this make local leaders less politically ideological? Anecdotally this seems to be the case. Michael Bloomberg, a former mayor of New York, consistently flip-flopped between the Democratic and Republican parties....Continue reading