Does Bipartisanship Work In a Polarized Congress?
Yes it does, according to professors Craig Volden and Alan Wiseman, who direct the Legislative Effectiveness Project.
By their calculations, a “typical lawmaker with above-average bipartisanship is about 11 percent more effective than a typical member with below-average bipartisanship.” They further observe in the January 3, 2017 Monkey Cage Blog of the Washington Post:
[W]e have found that bipartisanship is actually a more effective strategy now than in the past. This is perhaps surprising, given that Congress is increasingly polarized. Of course, polarization means that legislators are less bipartisan now than previously, which means that bipartisanship takes more effort. But for those interested in advancing legislation to address America’s pressing problems, bipartisanship offers a good return on that investment.