Connecticut Post, CT
Bank on it.
Truth be told, it has been a marriage of convenience for the past two years — ever since Connecticut Democrats turned away from Lieberman and his support for President Bush's Iraq war policies.
Senate Democrats welcomed Lieberman back in their caucus — happy to gain a 51-49 majority, but uneasy with his militant foreign policy. They swallowed hard when Lieberman endorsed Republican John McCain for president; steamed as Lieberman attached himself to McCain's hip on the campaign trail; and boiled when Lieberman launched assaults at their own candidate, Sen. Barack Obama.
But the latest news has them ready to burst. Lieberman announced Wednesday that he will kick off the Republican National Convention. He'll stand there and tell the nation to elect a Republican president.
"I only wish that impeachment existed for senators," complained California filmmaker and political activist Robert Greenwald, who launched an Internet petition drive to strip Lieberman of the chairmanship of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.
More than 53,000 people have signed the "Lieberman Must Go" petition that calls on Senate Democrats to remove Lieberman from his chairmanship when the 111th Congress convenes in January.....
That speech convinced Al Gore to name him as his running mate in 2000 — the first Jewish American to be placed on a major party's ticket. He ran for president himself four years later — and was considered one of the frontrunners early on — but fizzled out after placing fifth in the New Hampshire primary. Democratic voters, it seemed, were looking for a candidate who opposed the Iraq war, rather than a supporter of it.
Still, Lieberman received a standing ovation at the 2004 Democratic National Convention after delivering a nine-minute address in support of Kerry, a man that Lieberman said was "ready to be the leader this generation of Americans needs."
And in a not so subtle slight to Bush, Lieberman warned that making America safe again not only required "strong leaders who know when to use American power to destroy these Islamic terrorists," but "wise leaders who know when and how to build bridges with Islamic people."
In 2006, Greenwich Democrat Ned Lamont — asked by a youthful group of Internet-savvy anti-war Democrats — took on Lieberman for his support of Bush's Iraq war. Lieberman lost the Democratic primary but got a reprieve through a loophole in Connecticut election law that allowed him to form his own party and petition his way onto the November ballot.
Backed by Republicans and independent voters, Lieberman won re-election and secured his chairmanship when he provided Democrats a narrow 51-49 majority in the Senate.
Some Democrats have openly criticized Lieberman's embrace of McCain, but others are holding their tongue for now. Lieberman has also helped curtail some of the criticism when he sent a $100,000 check from his campaign fund to the Senate Democrats.....
"I don't pretend to know all the inside workings of the Senate Democrats," she said. "I know now they have kept him because they don't want to lose the majority. After the election — and after Obama becomes president — I think everybody is going to be looking at these things differently. But I would have no clue."
Tom Swan, who was campaign manager for Lamont in 2006, is just waiting for the November elections and hoping that Democrats pick up the five additional seats that now seem in play.
"If they do, it will make Joe the most irrelevant politician in Washington and the most despised," Swan said.