Let's Outflank Lieberman
by Josh Orton, Fri Nov 07, 2008 at 07:50:45 AM EST
Lieberman walked away unhappy after yesterday's meeting with Reid. Why? Because we know Reid directly confronted Joe with the dishonest attacks Lieberman used against Obama during the election - and told the Connecticut independent he'd have to step down from his Chairmanship of the Homeland Security Committee...and instead chair a lesser subcommittee.
But Lieberman wants a better deal. So he sulked around at a press conference after the meeting, telling reporters he would ponder "the options that I have before me." But he didn't give details.
Translation: Lieberman is desperately hoping to rally enough Dem allies to pressure Reid into keeping him.
But Reid's a step ahead. How do we know? A Reid source explained to Greg Sargent at Talking Points Memo that Lieberman only has one option left:
No agreement was reached in the meeting, the source says, but Reid apparently is looking at a coming caucus vote as a mechanism to resolve the standoff.Second translation: with Lieberman's last option known, we have an opportunity to close the door.
"If they aren't able to work something out satisfactorily, there will be a vote in the caucus," the source said.
Before, Lieberman was hoping to privately lobby his colleagues to save him. But with the curtain pulled back, we can lobby the same potential Lieberman allies. And now they'll have to choose between personal loyalty to Joe and doing the right thing - with the whole world watching.
If they hear from enough of us, there's no way Joe keeps his position of power.
So let's get to the phones. And the emails.
The number for the Capitol switchboard is (202) 224-3121. Start with your own Senator, but call the more conservative members of the Dem caucus too. Ask whether they support Lieberman remaining as Chair of the Homeland Security committee, given his unfair attacks on President-elect Obama. Be polite, and calm. The young people who answer the phones are entry-level staffers.
Post what you hear in the comments. Let's outflank Lieberman.
Update [2008-11-7 12:56:31 by Josh Orton]: Want more proof that Lieberman's cornered? His aides are now openly making threats that he'll bolt the Dem caucus if he doesn't keep his chairmanship of Homeland Security. What a bluff:
"Senator Lieberman's preference is to stay in the caucus, but he's going to keep all his options open," a Lieberman aide said. "McConnell has reached out to him and at this stage his position is he wants to remain in the caucus but losing the chairmanship is unacceptable."
Absurd. Lieberman would be even less powerful with the Republicans - they've got nothing senior to offer him. He's not going anywhere.
Update [2008-11-7 13:16:27 by Josh Orton]: Well, we know at least one Senator to ask specifically: Evan Bayh. I wonder what he thinks...