Democrats in the Legislature had a broad range of issues on which they could focus this session.

They could have kicked off their return to power with an assault on the tax cuts passed by the Republican-led Legislature in 2011, the Republican-backed overhaul of the state’s health insurance regulation or Gov. Paul LePage’s refusal to create a state exchange to comply with the federal Affordable Care Act.

Any of those would have lead to a spirited floor fight, a likely veto and plenty of opportunities for the parties to highlight their differences.

Those fights likely will happen someday, but the Democratic leadership’s decision to kick off the session with a focus on workforce development shows a interest in getting things done and not just framing issues.

Helping to better train unemployed, underemployed and future Maine workers for good jobs that either exist now or will soon should not be a partisan issue, and it has been one of LePage’s priorities for his first two years in office.

This seems to be an issue that is ripe for bipartisan cooperation, and if it’s done well, would have a positive impact on Maine’s economy, for large employers, small businesses and employees.

Some Republicans grouse that this is one of their issues, but they would be wise not to let this opportunity to work on it pass them by.

Successfully improving prospects for Maine’s workforce could restart a sluggish economy, and if that happens, there will be plenty of credit to go around.

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