Issue One: Former Tennessee Congressmen push for more bipartisanship among elected officials, public

Light shines on the U.S. Capitol dome in Washington, early Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019, prior to scheduled testimony from Constitutional law experts at a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee on the constitutional grounds for the impeachment of President Donald Trump. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
photo Zach Wamp / Staff file photo

Despite their partisan differences when they served in Congress more than a decade ago from opposite ends of the state, former Tennessee Congressmen Zach Wamp and Harold Ford united Thursday in urging members of Congress and the public that elects them to reach for common solutions rather than divisive fights.

"In today's culture and airwaves, hate pays," Wamp told the Rotary Club of Chattanooga on Thursday. "I hate to say that, but it is true, and we've got to do something about limiting this divisive and destructive tribalism that tries to demonize the other side."

Wamp, a Chattanooga Republican who served in Congress from 1995 to 2011, is helping lead a bipartisan group of 191 former elected officials dedicated to trying to reform Congress, limit the influence of big money in elections and work on finding bipartisan solutions to major problems.