Friday, November 7, 2008

A Man Without a Country: Joe Lieberman is Screwed.


He walks like a republican, talks like a republican, and votes on foreign policy like a republican, so why is it taking so long for him to switch parties? The Connecticut Senator, while retaining his seat by running as an independent, is registered as a Democrat-for now. Sen. Reid (D-NV) will likely strip him of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Chairs, effectively making him persona non grata. Political realignment would seem to be an easy choice given that Connecticut republicans essentially gave him his seat after state democrats had shown him the door. His hawkish views on Iraq, support for Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), and speaking at the Republican National Convention may not be enough to overcome his liberal social views, creating a major snag in changing affiliations.

Connecticut is in blue New England, and Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) might see an opportunity to snag a senate seat with a more conservative candidate while democrats will assuredly run a strong candidate in 2012. Senator McConnell likely sees support for the war in Iraq as Lieberman’s strongest asset, an issue that might very well be resolved in a few years. The Kentucky senator will also wonder how much help Lieberman will be in the upcoming fights for health care, the environment, taxes and Supreme Court nominees and decide that Joe would be little more than window dressing.

Don’t despair for Joe, though. His predicament is largely self-made. An elected official, of course, is expected to following his conscience. Publicly supporting a republican presidential candidate, any republican, is a different matter and should be enough for exile. Speaking at the republican convention was just fucking insane. What was he thinking? Senator Reid wouldn’t notice?

Whatever the outcome, Senator Lieberman seems poised to become marginalized, a man without a country whose hubris forced him to turn away from the party that nurtured him. So long, Joe, you won’t be missed.

4 comments:

tommy said...

I'd love to see Lieberman run for his own seat on the Republican ticket in 2012. Especially if Ned Lamont decides to take another crack at him, without a viable independent to split the vote (you will no doubt recall that Lamont edged Joe out, with a bit of a margin, in the primary). And if the outcome of that race were to finally give the democrats their filibuster proof majority (although they'll just as likely get it in 2010), it would be the most poetic kind of justice...

I have to disagree with you on one point, though: my feeling is that in a representative democracy, an elected official is expected to follow the mandate of his consituency (at least our elected officials here in Oregon are - just ask Gordon Smith), rather than follow his conscience. That's why it's called representative democracy, is it not? Joe stomped on that mandate when he traded in his own party allegiance to keep his job two years ago. That is, to my mind, the most dishonorable thing a politician can do, and he deserves whatever comes to him.

By the way, I just blogrolled you, so you'd best keep this thing going. ;-)

jabuspub said...

You make a good point about following the mandate of those who elected him, and I think a sizable percentage of Connecticans (?) at the time supported Bush and the war, including most republicans. Running as an independent, while showing his hubris,and being elected mainly by republicans (they ran a token candidate)and conservative democrats allows him to follow the mandate of those who elected him- douche bag republicans. As far as dishonoring himself, I couldn't agree with you more - he loves himself more than party or country.

tommy said...

I dunno, I'd say Connecticut has a pretty strong progressive electorate, as evidenced by Lamont's showing in the 2006 primary... At any rate, if Lieberman wanted to follow the mandate of douchebag Republicans, he ought to have run as a douchebag Republican in the first place. Either way, his political career is over, and the question of party affiliation is academic at best. From here on out, he's just a garden variety douchebag. A Douchebagian douchebag, you might say...

jabuspub said...

You speak the truth...