STREAMING LIVE: Lincoln Chafee on What Patriotism Looks Like


chafee brown.jpg
Tomorrow, Tuesday, at 12:15 pm, I will be chairing a meeting at the New America Foundation with former Senator Lincoln Chafee (R-RI).

Chafee, who is now a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Watson Center for International Studies at Brown University, is now a political independent and author of the book, Against the Tide: How a Compliant Congress Empowered a Reckless President.
Chafee helped launch Republicans for Obama along with philanthropist and former Bush 2000 campaign New York co-chair Rita Hauser and former Congressman Jim Leach. Chafee was also an indispensable partner, from a distance, in the battle to prevent John Bolton from receiving the confirmation of the US Senate as US Ambassador to the United Nations.
Bolton is still weighing in on international affairs and confirming every day why his brand of pugnacious nationalism is detrimental to American interests at the U.N.
The meeting will STREAM LIVE here at The Washington Note at 12:15 pm EST — and I will be sure to ask him about his reflections on patriotism in this time of swirling and severe political passions.
I will also ask him how given his background as a horse farrier, he became such an excellent, realist-tilting foreign policy expert. Lessons learned might be valuable given some of our political choices ahead.
— Steve Clemons


10 comments on “STREAMING LIVE: Lincoln Chafee on What Patriotism Looks Like

  1. Steve Clemons says:

    Mike — I think Lincoln Chafee’s talk was very thoughtful, earnest,
    balanced, serious — and deep. He confessed a lot about positions
    with which he was uncomfortable. He had an exchange with the
    public. He has stood by what he said.
    I wish you had been there — but one can’t say that he didn’t give
    us a clear portal to hear his thoughts, which I have posted here,
    and that he didn’t engage the public — which he surely did.
    Thanks for your post.
    Steve Clemons


  2. MIKE says:



  3. Mr.Murder says:

    Katrina Hearings apologist? Wasn’t ACORN’s HQ there? Didn’t that group help push for immigration reform at his office and the burnback lost Chaffee his seat?
    He punted judicial nominations so AWOL could resume his usual appointment tactic?
    This isn’t pure shining epiphanies we are talking about. Everything in DC has a price….


  4. WigWag says:

    Chafee helped launch Republicans for Obama along with philanthropist and former Bush 2000 campaign New York co-chair Rita Hauser and former Congressman Jim Leach.”
    I have said it before, but I just don’t get Rita Hauser. Lincoln Chafee I get. He’s a genuine progressive who abandoned the Republican Party to become an independent. Supporting Obama is a no brainer for him. Jim Leach I also get. He was always a relatively liberal republican who lost his seat in the Democratic landslide of 2004. Even though he is still nominally a Republican, his loss freed him to support whomever he wants and he supports Obama.
    I even get Chuck Hagel. He’s a maverick Republican who, in his heart of hearts, supports Obama, but doesn’t have the guts to endorse him or won’t out of loyalty to his friend McCain.
    But how can anyone explain Rita Hauser?
    Sure, she was Yasser Arafat’s personal lawyer at Strook, Strook and Levan and she represented the PLO for years. But she and her husband have spent a life time supporting the most reactionary Republicans around.
    She and her husband Gustave maxed out on contributions to George W. Bush both times he ran and the first time he ran she was a major bundler for him. Other Republicans she has donated to include: Lamar Alexander, John Isakson, Pete Wilson, Chuck Hagel, John Warner, Bill Weld, John McCain (Senate Race) and Mitch McConnell.
    She and Gustave have made numerous contributions to the Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee and collectively they have given $40,000 to the Republican National Committee since 1999.
    I think it’s great that she is supporting Obama. I just can’t get my head around it. How do you support Mitch McConnell and John Isacson one year and Barack Obama the next?
    The only explanation I can come up with is that she must have had some kind of epiphany.
    Perhaps she saw a light shine down from above. The light fell upon her and she knew she had to vote for Barack.
    I can’t imagine any other explanation for this positive but otherwise inexplicable change of heart.
    I know Steve thinks Rita Hauser is a “bridge builder” and I am sure he is right. But her political behavior seems really bizarre.


  5. ed says:

    If you saw the name “Lincoln Chafee” in print, you’d say to yourself, “With a name like that, that guy could be a Senator from Rhode Island.” If there was a picture attached, you’d say, “Wow, I bet that guy’s a Senator from Rhode Island.” If there was also audio, you’d say, “I will wager a year’s pay that that guy is a Senator from Rhode Island.”


  6. DonS says:

    I think it is interesting to ask ourselves why it is that a polite, mild mannered, cautious, observant individual such as Lincoln Chaffee would unhesitatingly refer to Sarah Palin as a “cocky wacko”.
    I know we are all a bit obsessed with Palin these days — and why not? Regardless of what might be a best strategy to deflate and defeat this truly unserious candidacy, we are after all talking about a nominee for vice president of the United States, not some far lesser post in which case resume and personal characteristics might be more easily glossed over.
    So why is it that Chaffee can call a spade a spade and most all of the media combined can’t find one honest note to sing?
    Chaffee no doubt feels liberated to speak truth, as he sees it, more openly. But what about virtually the entire media who insist on taking the nomination seriously, or at least not cynically, even as Karl Rove and surrogates have put it out there cynically. Are they afraid of ripping the mask off McCain’s charade? Afraid of being called not serious themselves? Or have they just plain forgotten about what a trust and responsibility it is the media holds in a “free” society?
    Good for Chaffee.


  7. bluegrasser says:

    I think the Senator makes an excellent point about the essential
    requirement of truthfulness. The current McCain/Palin campaign is
    riddled with lies. If they’re already lying, why should we expect
    their administration to be any more truthful than Bush/Cheney?
    Obama should hit them hard on this point.


  8. la.politique says:

    I am a registered democrat but one republican I respected and admired in the senate was Sen Chaffee. I watched him at different senate hearings and I knew, he put RIGHT above WRONG no matter what his party affiliation. Even though a democrat won his seat, it was a real disappointment for me because I wanted him back in the senate. If Sen Obama wins, I hope, he will have a major role in his administration.


  9. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “I will also ask him how given his background as a horse farrier, he became such an excellent, realist-tilting foreign policy expert. Lessons learned might be valuable given some of our political choices ahead”
    Never heard of “horse-sense”, eh Steve? There was an old boy Texan that used to lease Paramount Ranch in Aqoura, California, by the name of Dee Cooper. Paramount Ranch was the old western studio town and acreage where alot of the older westerns were shot. It was also, in the early seventies the site of the infamous “Southern Renaissance Faire”. If you hadn’t attended that fair at least once, you had no legitimate claim to early 70’s hippiehood.
    (In fact, it was directly caddy-corner from Ronald Reagan’s Aqoura Ranch on Los Virgenes road. Comical really, the Reagan’s didn’t live there full time, and had a full time english wrangler and caretaker that was the spitting image of “Higgins” on “Magnum PI”. Guy by the name of “Vince”. Even wore khakis all the time.)
    Anyway, whenever ‘ol Dee would finish a task or chore, or solve a problem, he’d mumble out loud “It doesn’t take me all day to look at a horseshoe”. It didn’t, either. I once watched him, over a period of about three weeks time, show Johnny Rivers the exact same buckskin gelding, groomed different, three separate times, upping the price each time. Rivers, convinced each time that it was a different horse, ended up buying the horse for $2500, when the same horse was originally offered to him for $500.


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