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Senators-elect Plan for Upcoming Congressional Session

Ten new faces will join the Senate in January -- eight Democrats, one Republican and one independent. Democrat Ben Cardin of Maryland and Republican Bob Corker of Tennessee discuss what they intend to bring to Congress.

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  • MARGARET WARNER:

    And joining us first is Democratic Senator-elect Ben Cardin of Maryland. He's currently the congressman from Baltimore. Mr. Cardin defeated Maryland's lieutenant governor, Michael Steele, to replace retiring Democratic Senator Paul Sarbanes.

    And welcome, Congressman, soon-to-be Senator Cardin. Congratulations.

    SENATOR-ELECT BEN CARDIN (D), Maryland: Well, thank you. It's a pleasure to be with you.

  • MARGARET WARNER:

    Now, the word this week in Washington from the president and the new Democratic leadership has been bipartisanship. What do you think it's going to take for this very divided Senate to work together?

  • SENATOR-ELECT BEN CARDIN:

    Well, I think we heard this from the voters all over Maryland and across the nation. They want us to work together to solve the problems of this country.

    So we're not going to get anything major done unless we work across the party line, and start listening to each other and developing legislation that addresses the problem of health care, and the environment, and energy. I think we can get it done, but we're going to have to be very patient and listen to each other.

  • MARGARET WARNER:

    And how much do you think that the president will also have to compromise with the Democratic leadership to get something done?

  • SENATOR-ELECT BEN CARDIN:

    Well, clearly the president is going to need to work with the leadership and Congress. It's not going to be the president's agenda; it's not going to be the Democrats' and Congress' agenda. It's going to have to be working together to deal with the problems.

    For example, energy independence. We all know that we want this nation to become energy independent. Democrats and Republicans want that. The president stated it in his State of the Union address last year. That's an area where I would hope that we could work with the White House and get something done.

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