ORLANDO -- U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson on Friday urged the leaders of Florida's 410 municipalities to pressure their federal lawmakers into ending the partisanship that has kept legislation on immigration, the budget and transportation from passing in Washington in recent months.
The Democrat made his plea at the Florida League of Cities annual conference in Orlando.
"It seems like Congress can't get along these days," Nelson said. "It's terribly frustrating and disappointing."
He said Florida's mayors and city council leaders can play a role by demanding that their federal lawmakers end the gridlock in Washington.
"Excessive extremist ideological rigidity is getting in the way of what the American people expect and deserve," Nelson said.
"They want us to get together and build consensus and do it in a bipartisan way."
The partisan rancor has even gotten to the point where a small group of lawmakers are threatening to shut down the federal government if health care reform isn't repealed, Nelson said.
"Really? Shut down the United States government?" he said. "This is an example of extreme partisanship and how extreme things have gotten in Washington."