Why Joe Lieberman must be defeated
I know a lot of people are sitting back, as nervous as a long tail cat in a room full of rocking chairs. They can't believe that enough people are tired of the way things are to send Lieberman packing.
But I think there are.
I think there have been for a long time and they didn't have a voice until now. Polls are inexact things, they can be wrong, but a incumbent down this late, outside the MOE, is going packing unless there is a miracle, but miracles happen.
But there's time for that tomorrow night. While the Lamont people either drown their miseries or engage in the kind of merry making which has people sneaking out of hotel rooms in the early morning, I'll be here explaining what happened. I thought about going up there, but I realized I'd be caught up in the small picture and this needs big picture thinking.
I've been in the field, and it's nervewracking, like a football game. But the stakes here are too high for that. A lot of people will be there, like subcomandante Atrios, but I want to see people shit the bed. And when you're dancing and drinking, you can't do that.
The upside is that Lamont's game got smarter and better and Lieberman's didn't.
Now, let's get to the matter at hand.
Joe Lieberman did his tour today, for the benefit of Terry Moran, and it looked like a farewell, a couple of big town stops, some paid crowds, and a little league game where he got a lame reception. Usually with a campaign, the last stops are big rallies, with people cheering. Not a trip to Wal Mart to shake hands.
Why should Lieberman be defeated?
First: he has ignored the people of his state. They can't get help from him when they need it. When a National Guard unit needs rifles and Lieberman's office gives men who strap 70 pounds of gear on their back a lecture on the M-16 over the M-4, they need to lose their job. His job was to help those boys get what they thought was needed, not tell them they were wrong.
When it came time to endorse people for the service academies, he was nowhere to be found.
There are towns he has refused to visit for years. He had time for Imus and Russert, but not
the people who sent him to office. Al D'Amato kept his job for years because he delivered for the state. In my heart, I think the D'Amato-Schumer election is the model here. Schumer worked hard as well to win, and D'Amato was just swept away, in part because he had been part of the Clinton witchhunt. Lieberman didn't even do that. He couldn't be bothered to help people when they needed it. But he had time for the TV shows.
I know a lot of people are frustrated with Chuck Schumer, but unless you live in New York, you don't see it. He's on TV a lot, as well, but local TV. If Joe had done some of his fighting on Channel 8 and NECN, Ned Lamont would be going to a noble defeat. Schumer makes sure people know he's working for the state.
But in the end, Lieberman forgot who sent him to Washington and while he was the toast of the town, he wasn't serving the people who sent him there.
Second, he is loyal to his vision of the world, and his vision alone.
A lot of people use Lieberman because he's willing to be used. The problem is that Democratic voters want someone to stand up to Bush, not make deals with him. He's bipartisan, and people see sellout. He never stands up for the Dems, but instead undercuts and chides them. He is not trustworthy. In 1998, they were afraid that Lieberman would call for Clinton's impeachment. It was a close run thing. In 2000, he undercut Al Gore. In 2005, he was the only Democrat willing to listen to Bush's plan to kill Social Security. Then he refused to filibuster Alito.
At every turn when the Dems needed his help, he was more willing to help the Republicans and Bush.
Third, Lieberman is a moral scold. From going after professors with Lynne Cheney, to the first Amendment and his threats to impign on the right to others, Joe Lieberman has no respect for your rights or your privacy. Video games, music, it doesn't matter. Lieberman wants to step on the first Amendment so he can tell you how to live.
Fourth, his blind support for the war, his sunny optimism is insane. He needs to lose his seat because he doesn't have a grasp of reality and now wants to run from the failure he has unleashed.
posted by Steve @ 11:26:00 AM