thoughtful. entertaining. random.

what’s up with joe?

Why is it that Joe Lieberman (D-CT) is playing the part of the Democrats’ pariah? His past voting record aside (a good, progressive one), this session he’s all but abandoned the party on cornerstone issues, such as Social Security, human rights, and sticking up for ordinary people. Instead, he sided with the Republicans on such key votes as Gonzales (AG), Rice (SoS), and personal bankruptcy “reform.” His only saving grace: his vote against oil exploration in ANWR.

(Kudos to the Republicans who sided with long-term sanity: McCain, Snowe and Chaffee, to name a few. And major grumbles of disapproval to the three Democratic turncoats: Landrieu (LA), Daniel Akaka (HI) and Daniel Inouye (HI) – shame on you three!)

Joe is also quick to attack Democrats who stand on principle. It’s fine to defend your own position without belittling others in your party. Folks like Joe Biden (D-DE), Ben Nelson (D-NE) and Russ Feingold (D-WI) do it often, and I give them credit for explaining their rationale in clear, positive language. But when Lieberman openly criticizes Howard Dean for his campaign stances on the Iraq War, homeland security, and so forth, it’s beyond the pale. Sure, Joe was trounced by Dean in the 2004 primaries; but let bygones be bygones. The Connecticut Democratic Party overwhelmingly supported Dean’s candidacy from the get-go, as did the majority of Democrats in the U.S.

But perhaps I’m being a bit huffy – after all, I did a lot of groundwork for Dean back in the day (I also did a fair amount of groundwork for Kerry and Edwards). But Lieberman’s open criticism does not help the party, and really doesn’t help his own cause in Connecticut. I can’t recall a time when there’s been as much unified groundswell amongst Connecticut Dems to put up a primary challenger against Joe. It’s about time, Nutmeggers – it’s about time.

If I still lived in Connecticut, I’d be doing some serious legwork for a good, progressive Democratic challenger who will represent Connecticut’s Democratic majority, not the Fairfield and Litchfield County Republican minority. If it were up to me, my choice would be Richard Blumenthal for U.S. Senate.

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