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What Would People Think?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

A Lightning Quick Note on Joe Lieberman

I'm no fan of Joe Lieberman, but can we all agree that Senate Democrats did the grown-up thing in not kicking him out of his chairmanship? Is there anyone among my readers who disagrees with that?

[Also, can we all agree that my posts have become shorter and less frequent since the time I wrote that post I'm linking to.....back in August of '06 before I started my job?]

8 Comments:

  • I can't remember the last time I've seen the Democratic Party in Congress not act like a bunch of whiny children, but yes, they clearly did the right thing by allowing Joe Lieberman to retain his chair. This intolerance of dissent within political parties is just one more reason for me to hate them.

    By Blogger Mike, at 11/19/2008 9:56 AM  

  • The difference, Mike, is this - Lieberman wasn't just dissenting from the party line (which is okay with Democrats - ask Ben Nelson), he was actively working against the party. So while I agree with you, I can definitely understand why Senate Democrats would want to oust Lieberman.

    By Blogger Jeff, at 11/19/2008 10:38 AM  

  • Jeff -

    I'd say the wasn't working actively working against the party, he was working against one particular Dem running for one particular office.

    I'd agree that they did the right thing by letting him keep his chair. "Right" in both the morally correct sense and in the politically expedient sense.

    My word verification is, get this: stomack.

    Awesome.

    By Blogger Matthew B. Novak, at 11/19/2008 11:14 AM  

  • He wasn't just working against Obama for President, he was working FOR McCain and FOR Palin, and FOR what they signified. He went to GOP rallies and knowingly misled Republican voters, telling them that Obama had voting against funding the troops and blah blah blah.

    I would much rather they oust Lieberman and put in a moderate Republican more in line with their agenda on that particular committee. But no way do I think they should keep him in that position, except to make sure he continues to caucus with them. Which is why they did it.

    I also wish dissent were more tolerated. But in this case, Lieberman's actions show that he is not interested in the policies and goals that his party is pushing. And it's the prerogative of the majority party to choose committee leadership, in order to implement the things for which they were voted into office.

    So yes, dissent should be tolerated, and I deplore the fact that it is not. But this isn't dissent on an issue, or group of issues, it has become a wholesale chasm of ideology. It is unfair to America for the Democratic majority not to oust a committee leader who will stand in the way of accomplishing what the Democrats have been put in place to accomplish.

    By Blogger Barzelay, at 11/19/2008 2:48 PM  

  • With the Democrats this close to a supermajority, they did the politically necessary thing by not completely alienating Lieberman.

    The Democrats were put in place largely as a rebuke to the current administration, and even largelyer because home prices tanked and the economy blew up.

    Anyone who thinks that Obama and the Democrats winning was a universal mandate for all issues Democratic need only consider the 20% percent of the voters in California who voted for Obama, and for Proposition 8.

    The mandate for a particular change is a myth that both sides find convinient. It is, however, dangerous to their longevity if they begin to believe it.

    By Blogger -Dave, at 11/19/2008 3:29 PM  

  • Ben, I agree with your post, and Jeff, I love the Ben Nelson shout out (woo Nebraska!!).

    By Blogger Erin, at 11/19/2008 11:33 PM  

  • This marks the first time anyone anywhere has written the words "woo Nebraska!!"

    By Blogger Matthew B. Novak, at 11/20/2008 12:19 AM  

  • I'm still waiting for the first utterance of "woo Montana!!" Would it count if there were fewer exclamation points?

    I have to admit Barzelay makes a very good point. But I still feel that if Joe Lieberman thought John McCain was the best candidate for the country, then good for him and to hell with the party. I wish more partisans would act in the name of country first and party affiliation second (or better yet, last). (And yes, I know that's a gross oversimplification of matters, but, well, that's what I do.)

    By Blogger Mike, at 11/20/2008 10:06 AM  

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