Representative Gabrielle Giffords was escorted to by her friend and fellow representative Debbie Wasserman Shultz to the House of Representatives. There, she delivered her formal resignation to Speaker John Boehner.
It isn’t often that we see any type of unity in the House of Representatives, but it was good to see that the political sides can rally around Ms. Giffords as she continues her rehabilitation. Notably, Republican Arizona Rep. Jeff Flake was holding her hand as Ms. Wasserman-Shultz read her letter of resignation.
As someone who followed Ms. Giffords’ career from the start, it is difficult to see her go, but I certainly understand her decision. Clearly she has made some incredible strides in her recovery, but a Representative must be able to communicate, and she has to work on her rehabilitation to get better. I wish her the best.
It strikes me as an attorney that lessons can be learned that apply beyond politics. Too often when we deal with the other side, in our case the prosecutors or insurance counsel, there is no awareness that there may be a better way to communicate. While we have an adversarial system, we do not need to always see each other as enemies.
I’m sure that Washington will be back to its old tricks in a few minutes, and so will the practice of law. But it is something to consider.
Attorney Nick Alcock practices law in Phoenix, Arizona
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