No Tenure for Joe Lieberman


Ned Lamont is kicking some serious tail in the Connecticut Senate Democratic primary process and quickly overtaking the iconic Joseph Lieberman who has spent a lot of his time cultivating credentials as a hawkish, neoconservative-leaning almost-Republican.
Some speculate that Lieberman will gather the signatures in Connecticut needed to run as an Independent if he loses his primary race to Lamont. The signatures would have to be filed the day after the primary.
I feel the same way about Lieberman running as an Independent as I did about President Bush appointing John Bolton to the UN via a recess appointment. That’s ok. Lieberman has the right to do that — just as the President has the right to end run the Senate on appointments — though they can only last through a single Congressional term.
But what is irritating is that other Democrats like Chuck Schumer have the arrogance to act as if politics is a “top-down” arrangement and that those at the helm are really just a stacked deck of leadership annointed personalities.
Schumer hinted at the possibility that if Lamont succeeds in forcing Lieberman out as the carrier of Democratic aspirations in Connecticut, that the DSCC might support Lieberman as an independent.
This is outrageous. Schumer needs to be told in no uncertain terms that if he works to protect the inbred qualities of a Democratic leadership that has been inchoate and thus far unimpressive in its response to Bush-led Republicanism, then he has to go as well. Schumer is trying to stop change inside the Democratic Party, and that is what the party needs most.
Here is what Schumer recently said:

Pointing to the victories of Webb, a Reagan Democrat with a flair for non-traditional Democratic positions, and Jon Tester, who spent half as much as his primary challenger in Montana, Schumer said that party activists had turned to pragmatism and were less inclined to hold candidates to litmus tests.
Schumer said the Dem primary voters want winners and are focused one electability. He couldn’t resist adding even “in 2008,” which pricked the ears of reporters who thought he was sending a message about the relative electability of Hillary Clinton. (He wasn’t, apparently.)
Schumer said that the DSCC “fully supports” Sen. Joe Lieberman in his primary bid, and he refused to rule out continuing that support if Lieberman were to run as an independent.
There were degrees of independence, Schumer said. “You can run as an independent, you can run as an independent Democrat who pledges to vote for Harry Reid as Majority Leader.”
Schumer said he had neither sought nor recieved assurances from Lieberman that an independent bid would not ensue if Ned Lamont tightened the noose.

Again, Lieberman like Lamont both have chances to head the Democratic ticket in Connecticut. If Lieberman wants to leave the Democratic Party and run as an Independent, best of luck to him.
But Schumer has to abandon corrupting the ability of Democrats to refresh the cast of people they want carrying their views in Washington.
— Steve Clemons


9 comments on “No Tenure for Joe Lieberman

  1. buzz says:

    Lieberman will win in Nov. and become Republican Chairman of the Environmental Comm.


  2. Matthew says:

    Sadly, Senator Schumer’s misplaced “loyalty” shows why Democrats have been so unsuccessful recently. You sense that many Democratic officeholders are more interested in holding onto the office instead of serving as a loyal opposition to the Republicans.


  3. Druthers says:

    What the country really needs is a third party. There probably won’t be one because the cancer of corruption, greed, money and power have spread to every part of the governing body.
    The Romans had the circus, we have TV news and Walmart.


  4. bob h says:

    Joe feels entitled to the Senate nomination in the same way he felt entitled to the Presidential nomination in ’04. If the Democratic Party supports an independent bid after defeat in the August 8 primary, this lifelong CT Democrat will be saying goodbye to the Party for good.


  5. Stranger says:

    Fully agree.
    Small correction, though – it’s Chuck Schumer, although some here in NY regularly refer to him by the name you used, for reasons fairly obvious.


  6. Stranger says:

    Fully agree.
    Small correction, thought – it’s Chuck Schumer, although some here in NY regularly refer to him by the name you used, for reasons fairly obvious.


  7. S Brennan says:

    This is the text of a letter I sent to Sen Harry Reid through his Senate email.
    Sen Harry Reid,
    Correct me if I am wrong, but it is my understanding that you said the following:
    “It’s important for people to know that their actions have consequences.”
    Many people are under the impression that your letter written to delegates on behalf of Lieberman made it crystal clear that you were endorsing Lieberman specifically because Joe was committing to stay in the party.
    Now I read this:
    In Connecticut, Lieberman campaign manager Sean Smith said this to news reporter Erik Campano,
    Erik Campano: Are we going to support Ned Lamont? [if he wins the primary]
    Sean Smith Ah, no! (laughs)…
    So Senator Reid, I have one question. Does Joe Lieberman get another pass or will their finally be “consequences” for his open support of the Republican party?
    So far Sen Harry Reid office has not replied,
    I think Steve is right on this post, the long time Dems in congress treat their job as an entitlement, which explains why the voter turnout is so low in off year elections.


  8. Pissed Off American says:

    Lieberman is the reason the George has that silly smirk on his face every time he gets behind the podium. Its a good thing Lieberman is small, or he wouldn’t quite fit. The same might be said for Bush, from Lieberman’s perspective.


  9. Linda says:

    I don’t live in CT though I am a Democrat (who does vote sometimes for excellent Republicans. I am not a big Lieberman fan, and I do hope that Democrats can take control of the House. However, I am a big fan of Chris Shays who is an moderate Republican and experienced and excellent Congressman. He has done his best on his subcommittee on Government Reform Committee to get this administration to turn over information on contracting in Iraq and worked very well with Henry Waxman and others. I’d vote for him if I lived in his district.
    We need talented, ethical, and experienced members of Congress from both parties, especially those who can and do work in a bipartisan way with respect and civility. Far too many such good members of Congress have retired or been defeated because of the ugly “gotcha” attitude that exists in Congress and in politics in general. It is a sad situation.


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