The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

Back on Sunday, I noted the discordance among Senate Democratswhen it has come to finding a single plan the caucus can get behind to stop the Iraq war. Listing all of the Senators who has made different proposals to end the war, I complained about the following:
We need a Democratic Party that is willing to work together to end the war, instead of a Democratic Party whose most visible leaders are more willing to one-up each other in an ongoing attempt to burnish their anti-war credentials to the primary electorate. Unfortunately, right now we have the latter, instead of the former.(...)

At some point, if we are ever going to get anywhere on ending the war in the Senate, Biden, Clinton, Dodd, Feingold, Kennedy, Kerry and Obama--all of whom have introduced different types of binding legislation to end the war--should sit down and fashion a combined bill legislative plan of some sort.
Now I realize that there is a problem to Democratic Senators sitting down and fashioning a joint plan to stop the war. That problem has a name, Joe Lieberman (emphasis mine):
So far, Lieberman is using his clout mostly in ways that discomfit his fellow Democrats, while his relationship with Republicans has involved more collaboration than coercion. When Senate majority leader Harry Reid said Bush's State of the Union proposal for a bipartisan terrorism panel was redundant, Lieberman, who supported the idea, privately sent Reid a letter saying he was "upset." Within days, Reid backed down and negotiated the panel's makeup with the White House. And last month, after Lieberman told Reid he had stopped attending the weekly Democratic lunch because he didn't feel comfortable discussing Iraq there, Reid offered to hold those discussions at another time. Lieberman has started attending again.
So, discussion of Iraq has now been banned from Senate Democratic caucus meetings. No wonder we have nothing resembling a unified plan to stop the war in the Senate. No wonder a dozen different Democratic Senators are offering up their own legislation to stop the war. Because of Joe Lieberman, Senate Democrats are not even discussing what the nation considers to be by far the most pressing issue facing American today: Iraq.

That is just great. We can't even talk about the biggest issue of the day because Lieberman doesn't want us to. This is truly an unmitigated blessing:
KING: Are you supporting Lamont?

CLINTON: I am but, you know, my -- I don't have the same view of this as some people do. My view is Connecticut is an unmitigated blessing for the Democrats because Lieberman has said if he wins he's going to vote with us to organize the Senate.
Fortunately, the appropriations process starts in the House, and so we don't need Lieberman on board in order to discuss the Murtha plan. If the Murtha plan succeeds, and Democrats do manage to all but end the war over the next eighteen months, it will be despite every Democrat who support Lieberman during his campaign to defeat Democratic nominee Ned Lamont.

Update: More unmitigated blessings. Lieberman threatens to swtich parties over Iraq.

Tags: 107th Congress Power-sharing Agreement, CT-Sen, Democrats, Iraq, Jeffords in 107th, Joe Lieberman, Loss of Majority in Senate, Murtha Proviso, Recall Elections, Republican Majority in 83rd Congress, Senate 2008, Wayne Morse (all tags)

Comments

56 Comments

Call Lieberman's bluff

Reid and the Senate Democrats should call Lieberman's bluff.  What is the worse that happens?   Lieberman bolts and we lose the Senate again until '08.  I know that is a gamble, winning it back is no sure thing.  

Does Lieberman really want to give up all his seniority and all his clout to go to the back of the line with the Republicans?   I doubt it.  

There is going to be so much gridlock in the Senate until a new President is sworn in, that regardless of who controls the Senate, the outcomes will not be much different.

by dpANDREWS 2007-02-22 11:08AM | 0 recs
Re: Call Lieberman's bluff

If Lieberman switched he would not "go to the back of the line"  McConnell wants to be the Majority Leader badly and he would give Lieberman just about anything he asked for if it meant bringing the Republicans back to the majority.

by blueryan 2007-02-22 12:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Call Lieberman's bluff

Lieberman's switching would not necessarily give McConnell the Majority Leader position under the rules agreed upon at the start of this Congress.  About all that McConnell could agree to is leaving Lieberman in his present position as committee chair for Homeland Security.

by VizierVic 2007-02-22 12:41PM | 0 recs
Good point

Of course - I say of course, but I've only just remembered - the reason why control switched to the Dems why Jeffords flipped was because there'd been an agreement between the parties at the start of the 107th to that effect.

I think there are precedents - didn't the GOP in the 83rd (Ike's first) have a single vote majority which it then lost, but continued to organize the Senate?

by skeptic06 2007-02-22 12:48PM | 0 recs
Motherlode

For one awful minute, I thought I was going to have to research this myself!

Thankfully, one Professor Richard Neumann of Hofstra U has done it for me. (Love it when that happens!)

Turns out that, in the 83rd, nine senators died, Wayne Morse flipped to Independent, such that

The Republicans had a Senate plurality from January to July 1953.  Then the Democrats had a plurality until June 1954; the Republicans again until December 1954; and finally the  Democrats again until the 83d Congress ended in January 1955.  These periods were occasionally interrupted by a week or two, and in one case a month, when the parties were tied.

If the GOP could hold on through that lot, I think the Dems will manage well enough without Joe.

by skeptic06 2007-02-22 01:13PM | 0 recs
CRS report on Jeffords and the 107th 'pre-nup'

The report has everything you wanted to know about the powersharing agreement entered into at the start of the Congress, and how it played out when Jeffords made his move.

by skeptic06 2007-02-22 01:20PM | 0 recs
Re: Call Lieberman's bluff

This comment is off-base, Reid isn't refusing to discuss Iraq, he's just not doing it in the meetings with Lieberman, which makes perfect sense.

Useless-Joe is just an anchor in those meetings anyway, he has nothing positive to contribute, and only undermines everything.

So, why should Democrats discuss anything with him?

They can simply get together at another time to discuss Iraq and not have Joe along. After all he doesn't want to attend the caucus meetings about Iraq anyway, since he won't be voting with other Democrats.

The reason the Democrats are divided on what to do about IRaq is simple. Republicans have enough votes to block anything they might try to do, and Democrats are uncertain what to do in the face of that.

Should they go all out to block funding, knowing that such a move has no chance of success until 2008's budget at the very earliest, since the Republicans won't even let such an issue come to a vote?

Should they limit themselves to symbolic measures like the "bi-partisan" non-binding resolution?

Democratic debates on Iraq are really about how to posture to throw more blame on the Republicans and how to put more pressure on Bush. Nothing that they can do between now and January 2009 is going to stop the war if Republicans continue to insist on supporting it, and they know it. Democrats can't even get a resolution passed, let alone cut off funding (not that Bush would do anything but veto it anyway).

That, and not Joe Lieberman is the real problem.

by Cugel 2007-02-22 01:47PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

J-Lie = Drama Queen

by res 2007-02-22 11:23AM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman
Let him switch. And then for the love of God, Connecticut, recall him!
by JonesingforaDem 2007-02-22 11:27AM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

What is the possibility of recall in CT?

by Jerome Armstrong 2007-02-22 12:06PM | 0 recs
There *is* no recall of Federal officials!

The guy downthread threw me for bit.

This piece links another saying that McCain has volunteered to be subject to a recall - and that some good AZ citizens have risen to the challenge.

Oh, and there's apparently a court decision - unlinked - that US Senators cannot be recalled.

by skeptic06 2007-02-22 12:27PM | 0 recs
JTA...

There is a summary of state recall laws produced in 2004 by what looks like the CT lege's equivalent of the CRS.

For future reference.

by skeptic06 2007-02-22 12:40PM | 0 recs
Re: There *is* no recall of Federal officials!

That "guy" downthread is a woman.  Careful with how you gender your language; it's 2007 not 1907.

Thanks for the info about federal recall.

by Lassallean 2007-02-22 05:38PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

There is none.  I don't think any state can recall a Senator.

by Calvin Jones and the 13th Apostle 2007-02-22 02:32PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

I disagree.  I don't like Lieberman anymore than anyone else and I contributed to Lamont, but him being in our caucus is A LOT better than him being in the Republican caucus.  The majority sets the agenda and has a majority in all the committees.  Even in the Senate where the majority can easily be stopped by the minority, it's still MUCH better to   have the gavel.

I think we have to baby Lieberman for a little while, but as we get closer to 2008 I think that could change.  Once it becomes apparent that the Dems look likely to pick up seats in 08 we are in much less risk of losing Joe.  He knows if he switched he would likely be putting himself back in the minority and be viewed as a traitor.  I say we have to baby him for about a year or so then we can essentially tell him to go fuck himself and he'll probably still stay in the caucus and if he doesn't stay at least we would be looking at being right back in the majority.  I wouldn't be surprised as all, however, if Lieberman endorsed the Republican candidate and spoke at their convention.  In fact if McCain gets the nomination I would be surprised if Lieberman didn't get behind him.

by blueryan 2007-02-22 12:38PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

We can't. But we can hold meetings for Connecticut For Lieberman.

by Sprinkles 2007-02-22 01:37PM | 0 recs
Lieberman *is* the swing vote

If you were in Joe's shoes, you'd do it too: a three-term senator thinks he's got a freehold, a bunch of insurgents kill him at the primary, he beats their man in the general.

You don't need to be Dr Phil to join the dots!

If you're Harry, you know Joe is on the other side of the aisle on Iraq; and that he's looking for some payback in terms of humiliation of Dem colleagues he believes (delusionally or not) stabbed him in the back.

But you don't want him going off in a huff.

Not discussing Iraq at the Caucus lunches doesn't seem to me a disproportionate offering. (The bipartisan terrorism panel thing is obviously more substantial: but, again, weighed in the balance with losing the majority, not disproportionate.)

But - using the Iraq/Caucus lunch thing as an excuse for a lack of a unified Dem proposal on Iraq is absurd: there are hundreds of rooms in the Capitol and the associated office buildings in which a bunch of senators can have a meeting.

If they really want to.

When you say

We can't even talk about the biggest issue of the day because Lieberman doesn't want us to.

I'd need some evidence for that.

Dem senators do talk about Iraq - but mostly different things. But they could get together and hammer out a single plan if they wanted to.

The inescapable inference (failing evidence for the Lieberman squeeze) is that Dem senators do not want to unite behind a plan for Iraq.

Some of them are running for prez, and need a distinct product; others, perhaps, just aren't team players.

As for the Murtha Proviso, I'm fairly sure it's miles off cloture, probably is well short of a simple majority.

Lieberman (as was predictable) is batting for the other team on Iraq, so it's hard to see how he's to blame for the Proviso's numerical shortcomings.

by skeptic06 2007-02-22 11:31AM | 0 recs
Er - strike the reference to cloture

Should have recalled my own exhaustive/ing treatment of how the Proviso proceedings on the Senate floor might go.

Cliff Notes: if the Proviso is in the base bill, and a GOP amendment to strike it is tabled, the GOP will not be able to filibuster the Proviso and only the Proviso. It's the whole bill or nothing.

Right now, like I said, I sense that there is not even the simple majority needed to table an anti-Proviso amendment.

by skeptic06 2007-02-22 11:45AM | 0 recs
Digby

thinks the line about Reid "offering" to hold Iraq discussions at another time for Lieberman's sake is crap, and that instead, Reid decided it was necessary to avoid having a turncoat (who was already known to be having bi-weekly meetings with Hadley on Iraq) be present for Democratic Iraq strategy discussions.

by taylormattd 2007-02-22 11:43AM | 0 recs
That ol' Hillary judgement

She's a great handicapper. I hear she has Barbaro in the '07 Kentucky Derby.

by joejoejoe 2007-02-22 11:51AM | 0 recs
RECALL HIM NOW

I don't think we should wait.  If there is a recall process in Connecticut, I think we should start laying the ground work to recall him now.  Lieberman should know that he isn't the only one with leverage.

by Lassallean 2007-02-22 11:56AM | 0 recs
No recall for Federal elected officials

Surely?

by skeptic06 2007-02-22 12:06PM | 0 recs
Re: No recall for Federal elected officials

The "Recall McCain" effort in Arizona was based on a state-local recall procedure. Because, as you say, Senators are federal officials, the state recall procedure has no force of law against Senators. However, Arizona Senators are asked to sign and file a voluntary pledge-- which McCain did-- agreeing to resign if ever defeated in an Arizona recall election.

Unless Connecticut has a similar recall law on the books, no recall of Lieberman could take place, and unless Lieberman signed an analogous pledge, the recall could have no legal effect. And, of course, I'm not sure that the pledge could be legally enforced against Lieberman anyway even if the pledge exists and he signed it...

by Silent sound 2007-02-22 12:23PM | 0 recs
Only saw your piece...

...when I'd commented upthread on Jerome's!

by skeptic06 2007-02-22 12:30PM | 0 recs
Re: RECALL HIM NOW

I am pretty sure that actually initiating a recall would backfire unless Lieberman actually did jump to the Republicans, as CT voters (who did just vote Lieberman in, after all) would not go along with it; the recallers would be made to look outside the mainstream, and Lieberman would be able to add another entry to his list of "look, I'm untouchable even by 'my own party'" evidences. If Lieberman DID jump ship or do something equally extreme, then CT voters could pretty easily be convinced that Lieberman misled them in the election and was thus no longer worthy of their support, and a recall (if CT in some way supports Senatorial recalls) would become worthwhile and feasible, but trying to do the recall "too early" can only be counterproductive.

However, laying the groundwork for a recall  now-- and making it absolutely clear that if Lieberman does jump ship, a recall will start promptly-- makes a lot of sense and could be very immediately productive. If nothing else, it would defang Lieberman's threats to jump ship and probably force him to backpedal from them, and thus give the Democratic leadership a lot more leeway in terms of what they can do without risking Lieberman's wrath.

by Silent sound 2007-02-22 12:18PM | 0 recs
Re: RECALL HIM NOW

I'm fairly sure there is no recall process for federal office-holders. Certainly hard to see in the 17th Amendment:

The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each state, elected by the people thereof, for six years; and each Senator shall have one vote. The electors in each state shall have the qualifications requisite for electors of the most numerous branch of the state legislatures.

It's a tight tightrope as long as the Democratic Caucus only has 51 members; the unfortunate reality is that Lieberman has a ton of leverage because the progressive agenda can get a lot further with than without a Democratic majority.

by alex hill 2007-02-22 12:19PM | 0 recs
Better an End in Terror than Terror without End

In my opinion, we should execute as much of our domestic agenda speedily and then bring things to a head.  

We cannot allow Lieberman to hold us hostage for two years.  If he wants to be a Republican, fine.  He will never get elected to anything else again.

It is too bad that the troops have to live with the consequences but apparently there is nothing that we can do about it.  Lets get Lieberman out of our hair.  That way, we can continue to push the people's business.

by Hellmut 2007-02-22 11:59AM | 0 recs
Re: Lieberman

Maybe the Demo leadership should have been more enthusiastic about trying to get Ned Lamont elected instead of sucking up to Holy Joe. They should have expelled Lieberman and let him become a Republican, which is what's going to happen anyway.

by Phil from New York 2007-02-22 12:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Lieberman

Joe become a Publican before the election?  What a laugh!  Joe's a coward.  That would take guts to do.    

Forcing him to make the jump before the election woudl have had one advantage.  It would have destroyed the MSM narrative the lazy slugs in the press and broadcast media had adopted.  They would have needed to write something new, which alone would have helped Lamont.

by VizierVic 2007-02-22 12:46PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

I believe it was Bill Clinton who said the above on a segment with Larry King.

by Kingstongirl 2007-02-22 12:00PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

Fine, let him bolt. We will filibuster them to death and make it impossible for them to get anything done--already hard enough since we'll continue to control the house. If push comes to shove, even in the minority senate Dems will be able to block appropriations bills that would continue to fund the war. Does Joe really want to be the guy who forced Dems' hand on that?

by kovie 2007-02-22 12:19PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

Let Lieberman bolt he's just a spy for the GOP now anyway. Let him go down with the Bu$h ship and while doing destroy his political future for good. He's less then worthless now he's an impediment. The only reason to keep him on board is in case a SCOTUS position opens. The D's are going to need those Committee chairs to block Bu$h's attempts of handing us over to a religious rt. SCOTUS for the next 30 yrs. But Joe will probably help his buddy Bu$h do that as well. So is it worth caving to this creature for the next 2 yrs.?

by Blutodog 2007-02-22 12:26PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

Connecticut made their bed, let them lie in it.  I am sorry, but sometimes people (or places) need to be accountable.  No excuse for a blue state to have re-elected this bastard.  I am very very pro-union, but i am tired of some rank-and-file union members (usually the social conservative variety) straying off the reservation and not sticking with Dems.  The only way our coalition works to elect Democrats is for us to all stick together, no matter how disparate our coalition is.

Too often, union people seem to stray.  For instance, in Michigan in 2006, gay Democrats loyally supported Democrats and union issues, whereas a lot of union members voted to ban gay marriage.  Thanks, guys.

by jgarcia 2007-02-22 12:31PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

meant to have included that, according to exit polls, a SUBSTANTIAL amount of union voters supported Lieberman in 2006.  That's very disappointing.

by jgarcia 2007-02-22 12:32PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

You're right. I pollstanded next to a union guy who was there for Joementum. He was actually a decent enough guy, he said he liked Lamont actually voted for Lamont in the primary but the union (IBEW) went for Lieberman in the general so that's who he supported. I got the sense it was a top-down thing, you can blame the guys but it comes down to the leadership cozying up to a powerful incumbent. You know what they say about playing with fire...

I don't know if we should be mad at antiwar Joe voters for buying Lieberman's "nobody wants to bring the troops home more than me" schtick, blame Lieberman for pulling that shit, or blame the CT media for not calling him on it after the election. And the fact that the Republicans dropped Schlessinger like a turd - if that's not collusion to deceive voters I don't know what is.

by joesaho 2007-02-22 05:01PM | 0 recs
Which leads me to conclude...
...the two previous posts (jgarcia and joesaho) are exactly why They Work For Us will never be able to do what we want it to do with the SEIU involved at a leadership level.
Sorry to get all OT on you.
by johnalive 2007-02-22 06:53PM | 0 recs
Re: Which leads me to conclude...

Unions are politically transactional, TWRU is politically transformative. Hat tip to Joe Trippi.

by johnalive 2007-02-23 04:18AM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

Yeah, and Hillary did nothing to oppose Lieberman during the final days of the campaign as well.  As far as I'm concerned, both Obama and Clinton went MIA on the most critical issue facing the republic in these perilous times by enabling Lieberman to remain in office.  Their active support could very well have upset the campaign dynamics in CT to allow Lamont to get his message out.  That would have helped Lamont and, more than likely, the Democrat running against Chris Shays as well.  Instead, their lack of courage allowed Lieberman to lie his way through the campaign and for Shay's to squeak into office again.

by VizierVic 2007-02-22 12:38PM | 0 recs
The problem runs deeper

 There's an unstated assumption undergirding these posts -- that the Democrats really do want to pull the plug on the war and the they're resentful of Joe Lieberman for being in the way.

 I'm not so sure that's true.

 I don't think the Democrats in the Senate are "surprised" that Lieberman's reverted to his old warmongering self; I think they're relieved he is. The covert support the Democrats gave Lieberman during his election campaign came because he was pro-war, and having him in the Senate allowed the Senate Dems to have it both ways -- they could appear to oppose the war by offering up a toothless resolution here and there, while at the same time being secure in the knowledge that Lieberman would the bad guy to torpedo all these efforts, which their hearts really aren't in anyway.

  Lieberman provides a valuable service to the pro-war Senate Dems like Hillary -- he serves as a convenient outside-the-party fall guy for undermining any efforts to stop the war, keeping the Dems' creds safe with the base.

  I'm sorry if this comes across as unremittingly cynical, but the alternative explanation is that the Senate Dems are transcendentally stupid, and really believed that Lieberman would play ball with them once they helped him get re-elected.

 And I don't think they're stupid. Our Senators -- on both parties -- are enjoying this war thoroughly, and don't want it to end ever. But the Democrats have to put up an act to remain viable...

by Master Jack 2007-02-22 01:57PM | 0 recs
Re: The problem runs deeper

Interesting conspiracy, but seriously flawed...

First of all Joe's actual support was dismal among the Senators after he lost the primary.  Before the primary they supported him because they had to.  Had the Democratic Senators actively tried to toss Joe out of the party before the primary there would be a much greater chance Joe would have caucused with the Republicans for this Congress.  I highly doubt the vast majority of Democratic Senators want the war to continue.  To believe they do is kind of trollish to be honest.  Listen to them speak about the issue and tell me that's really what you believe.  To make that argument about a small, small minortiy of them is one thing, but to claim they all want this war is utterly wrong.

by blueryan 2007-02-22 02:36PM | 0 recs
Re: The problem runs deeper

 If the Democrats had thrown the entire party fundraising apparatus and infrastructure behind Ned Lamont (who was, after all, the party's nominee), there would have been no concerns about whom Lieberman would have caucused with, because he wouldn't have been in the Senate anymore.

 Instead, they walked on eggshells around Joe, sent out the message that it didn't really matter who won (per Bill Clinton's quote), offered Lamont only token, half-hearted support, and happily let Joe lie and demagogue his way to re-election.

 Did Lamont make mistakes? Sure he did. The problem was that there was no party infrastructure available to him to help him overcome his inevitable rookie mistakes. No candidate runs a flawless campaign, but few candidates are left hanging out to dry by the party the way Lamont was.

 So the end result is that Lieberman is in the Senate, and he's just as much of a Dem saboteur as he ever was. "Thanks for your support, Harry. Now go to hell." Any Democrat surprised by this is an idiot. And I don't think any of them are idiots.

by Master Jack 2007-02-22 02:51PM | 0 recs
Re: The problem runs deeper

> There's an unstated assumption undergirding these
>  posts -- that the Democrats really do want to
> pull the plug on the war and the they're resentful
>  of Joe Lieberman for being in the way.
>
>  I'm not so sure that's true.
>
>  I don't think the Democrats in the Senate are
> "surprised" that Lieberman's reverted to his old
> warmongering self; I think they're relieved he is.
>  The covert support the Democrats gave Lieberman
> during his election campaign came because he was
> pro-war, and having him in the Senate allowed the
> Senate Dems to have it both ways

Thank you.  Dead on target.

sPh

by sphealey 2007-02-22 03:38PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

Is Lieberman still a member of the DLC?  How is his relationship with the other members of the Dem Gang 14?

I find it really difficult to believe that 'one' man have so much power of a party...  ESPECIALLY on issues of war.

by SandThroughTheEyeGlass 2007-02-22 04:54PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

In retrospect, Lamont was  not a very good candidate.  He was actually like a fish out of water, IMHO.   Lieberman won by default.  A more experienced politician with somewhat of a name would have kicked Lieberman to the curb.

On my way home I tuned to my local talk station  and found Lieberman interviewed by rabid Sean Hannity.  What a barf fest.  He might as well be a Republican.  They were hooping it up like old friends.  He said "Sean, my wife and I are big fans of your show"  (What?)   He went on to bash the Democrats at every turn.  I am almost inclined to just let Lieberman get the hell out of Dodge, but of course we would lose majorities in all committees, which overrides the wish to let Lieberman walk.

In 2008 the GOP has 22 Senators up for re-election, the Democrats only 11.  We should be able to pick up 3 or 4 to build a more solid majority, then it is sayonara to Lieberman.  Don't need you pale behind anymore.  An added bonus:  Even as a GOPer he will most likely  still be quite liberal in many of his votes (except when it comes to Iraq, War on Terror) so he will probably eventually be disdained by most Republicans as a RINO.      

by georgep 2007-02-22 04:59PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

Lamont would have crushed Schlessinger in a 2-way, and would have won the 3-way if the state Republicans had given any support to Schlessinger. I didn't see a single ad for him the entire season on TV. With the situation the way it was, I think anyone - Weicker, Curry, Blumenthal, anyone else challenging would have had the same difficulties Lamont did - Lieberman won because he was messaging to conservatives and confusing moderates.

by joesaho 2007-02-22 05:06PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

I thought he was a self-made Millionaire?  Why no ads on TV?  That seems kind of foolish.  

by georgep 2007-02-22 05:15PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

You are aware that Lieberman outspent Lamont, right?  Lieberman bought up enormous quantities of air time in the CT markets to broadcast his gauzy, feel-good, dishonest ads through the entire campaign.  In addition, the major newspapers in CT supported Lieberman throughout, buying his narrative totally and faithfully stenoing it out to the voters.  

Lamont couldn't break the inertia which existed in the entire campaign just by himself, as a newcomer to state politics.  The national (Schumer, Reid, Clinton, Obama) and state (Nancy DiNardo and others) Democratic Parties did zippo to really help him, to help establish his credentials for the electorate.  None of our leading Presidential candidates saw fit to bother themselves to come to CT to campaign for Lamont either, despite their having openly and publicly supported Lieberman in the primary.  Lieberman was given a pass as being one of the good guys by his Senate colleagues and they're reaping the disaster they sowed back in November 2006.

 

by VizierVic 2007-02-22 07:11PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

Let's not forget that it was quite an achievement for Lamont to win the primary itself. Most people did not even give him a chance to even force a primary, let alone win one.

Lamont could have ran a better campaign. But he was misled by the Dem establishment. If you said in early 2006 that Lamont could get 40% in a general election, you would have said impossible. He went against a fluke convergence of factors - stubbron CT electorate in some areas as beautifully described in a link i provided a few times in the past(people who just flat out refused to give him any serious consideration no matter what he did), a Dem establishment that was weak in his support, and a rabid REpublican establishment working against him and their own candidate.

When I read Tim Tagaris account, I realized why Lamont couldn't take it to the next gear. FATIGUE. Damn, what he accomplisehd right up until the primary was super impressive. If he laid low at the advice of the establisment, can you blame him? Imagine the mental exhaustion of his volunteers and him. What he needed was for help from other quarter to enable him to go into the next gear. And lacking that, he still could hacve won, but he needed more time to break through  misconceptions of a stubbron electorate that would not even listen to him.

by Pravin 2007-02-23 01:59AM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

Look, the poster I commented to stated that he saw not a single Lamont TV ad.  Not one.  Certainly, there should have been some in that market he would have stumbled across?   In a comparatively larger market (Tampa Bay) I could not help but stumble across ads from many candidates from both parties, whether they were even supported by the national party at all, got full support, or half-hearted.   For someone to  not see a single TV ad for Lamont during campaign season must have meant that Lamont did not purchase a lot of TV air time.  

by georgep 2007-02-23 06:15AM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

I think 8 in '08 is a good plan for the Senate.  I also think right now Lieberman is feeling his power, but he is not going anywhere.  He wants to be with the majority and the winds are not blowing in the Republicans direction. He talks a good game though and  maybe right now Harry and the rest of the Dem. Senators are doing the,"Please don't go Joe" imploring, instead of calling his bluff.

by Kingstongirl 2007-02-22 05:31PM | 0 recs
Re: The Senate's Iraq Problem: Lieberman

* Research & Knowledge Needed -- This post looks promising?**

I wanted to link/post this entry... it says that Lieberman won't flip the senate.  I've been trying to find a Daily Kos diary that said the same thing about 1-2 months ago.. Can't find it unfortunately.  Anyway, if this is TRUE then the Democrats need to shove this a*shole out the door asap.

February 22, 2007
Lieberman Switch Wouldn't Flip Senate
With Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) publicly stating he'd consider becoming a Republican if Democrats block new funding for the Iraq War, many Democrats worry that control of the Senate hangs in the balance. However, their fears are unfounded. Many think back to 2001 when former Sen. Jim Jeffords (I-VT) began caucusing with Democrats instead of Republicans, taking control of the Senate out of GOP hands. However, the two situations - though outwardly similar - contain one important difference.

If Lieberman were to caucus with the Republicans, they would still not take full control of the Senate, despite Vice President Dick Cheney's ability to break 50-50 ties. This is because of a little-known Senate organizing resolution, passed in January, which gives Democrats control of the Senate and committee chairmanships until the beginning of the 111th Congress.

What's the difference between now and 2001? A small but important distinction. When the 107th Congress was convened on January 3, 2001, Al Gore was still the Vice President and would be for another two-and-a-half weeks. Therefore, because of the Senate's 50-50 tie, Democrats had nominal control of the chamber when the organizing resolution came to a vote. With Dick Cheney soon to come in, however, Democrats allowed Republicans to control the Senate in return for a provision on the organizing resolution that allowed for a reorganization of the chamber if any member should switch parties, which Jeffords did five months later. There was no such clause in the current Senate's organizing resolution.

-- Scott Keyes
http://politicalinsider.com/2007/02/lieb ermans_switch_wouldnt_flip.html

The daily kos diary went into it in detail.

by SandThroughTheEyeGlass 2007-02-22 05:33PM | 0 recs
Recall Lieberman

Do you know if this is possible in CT?

by jasmine 2007-02-22 07:13PM | 0 recs
Is he for Iraq because he's for Israel? Question.

This question started a firestorm in another context, and I hope it can be addressed rationally here.

In discussions, people have suggested L. is promoting the Iraq war because, in part, it takes pressure off Israel.  Before it degenerated into yells of "racism," it went like this:

      1. L. is a Jew who supports the Jewish homeland.

  1. Right now the Israeli military is in bad shape, admitted by the Israeli military and government.
  2. Israel needs some time to get its military back together.
  3. If Israel were attacked right now, it could be in big trouble.
  4. As long as the US is in Iraq, the focus of Islamic extremists will be on Iraq.
  5. Thus, Israel has time to reconstitute its military while the US is in Iraq.
  6. L. has an interest in seeing that Israel is secure and has time to pull its military together.
  7. Thus, L. might (might) support US involvement in Iraq in part (in part) to give Israel that breathing room.

No, I am not a racist, a troll, or a Zionist plant. I just heard the argument, looked at a map and the news for a while, and saw some possible (possible) merit in the argument.  You all know more about who finances L.'s campaigns, which organizations he belongs to, etc. What does your knowledge of such things say to that argument?

I'm just asking.

by traveler 2007-02-22 08:32PM | 0 recs
So that poses an interesting question...

...is it worth Majority Leader McConnell to purge Lieberman now or do we have to throw him a bone for the next two years?

A truly terrifying portrait of McConnell from the Monthly...

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/feature s/2006/0610.roth.html

by MNPundit 2007-02-22 09:33PM | 0 recs
I didn't hold my nose and voted for Casey

just so that now people will come and tell me that throwing the majority back to the Republicans won't matter.

Trying to get rid of JL was always a quixotic attempt. Those responsible need to get to grip with the consequences of their actions.

by Cyt 2007-02-23 07:14AM | 0 recs
Didnt Lieberman whine about SINGLE issue politics

Remember how Lieberman and his cronies in the DEmocratic Party were whining how Lamont supporters were crucifying Lievberman on one issue - Iraq despite the fact that Lieberman already engaged in one issue demonization of progressive Dems? Well isn't what Lieberman threatening to do now over ONE SINGLE ISSUE - IRaq?

Lanny Davis - Hello?

by Pravin 2007-02-23 02:45AM | 0 recs

Diaries

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