WASHINGTON — Sen. Olympia Snowe continued to stress the need for compromise Thursday in her final hearing as ranking member of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship.

Snowe, R-Maine, has served on the committee since her arrival in the Senate in 1995, and was chairwoman from 2003 to 2006. She also served on the House Small Business Committee.

Snowe, who received a standing ovation from fellow committee members, cited corrosive partisanship for her decision to leave Congress after more than 30 years in the House and Senate. She said none of the committee’s goals can be accomplished without bipartisanship.

“We must strive to find common ground, and to reach consensus on the issues that matter most to our fellow Americans. As I close for the last time as ranking member of this committee, it is my hope that the legacy of bipartisanship and problem solving that has defined the committee will continue,” she said.

Her final committee hearing focused on wide-ranging bills on entrepreneurship. David Clough, the Maine state director of the National Federation of Independent Business, was among those who testified.

Snowe cited among her achievements the elevation of the administrator of the Small Business Administration back to a Cabinet-level position under President Barack.


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