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Let's be clear on what Democrats think about somebody who CAMPAIGNS for Republicans, raises money for Republicans, speaks at the Republican Convention in support of Republicans, and ATTACKS Democratic politicians, slanders Democratic candidates, and aggressively fights against the Democratic agenda.

And let's be clear that this behavior has been going on YEARS, and his latest, most egregious anti-Democratic antics are only the most reprehensible in the long history of a self-serving politician already BOOTED OUT BY DEMOCRATS IN HIS OWN STATE.  

In the final analysis, this is a Test of our Leadership.  "Democratic" Senators who vote to allow Joe Lieberman to maintain his senority and committee control, ignoring the will of Democrats across the US, and the long list of Lieberman transgressions (cited below) are saying one clear thing to America: BEING A "DEMOCRAT" MEANS NOTHING.    

Of course, Republicans have been claiming that for years.

And many "independents" still believe it.

Will even the most dedicated Democrats wonder that tomorrow?

Does being a Democrat actually STAND for anything?

Does it, Senator Reid?

I've supported this Majority Leader while Democrats were in the minority in the Senate, and while we had the tenuous "majority" with Lieberman's "Party of one."  Senator Reid may have the most compelling personal story in the Democratic Senate.  A Depression kid who fought his way out of a shack in the Nevada desert to become Majority Leader of the US Senate.  He is part of the legacy of the New Deal, proof that we are the real party of working America, that we have a "big tent," and that we DO respect differing views within the Party.

His tenure may have seemed timid so far to many Democrats, but I trusted he had a "master plan," and was just waiting for the right time to go on offense.  Waiting for a solid majority first, maybe even control of the White House, before flexing enough muscle to impose some discipline on a lazy caucus and finally move the Democratic agenda, and America, foward.  

Until this election, Harry had little choice but to swallow the toxic Joe.  Holding a slim majority in the Senate while waiting for a real working majority was that important.

Not anymore.  

It's now time Harry shows what he can do.  Or, sadly, it's time for Harry to go.

There is no need to swallow the embarrassment anymore.  The caustic selfishness, and rank hubris that is Joe Lieberman, and that makes it so difficult sometimes to explain what a Democrat IS.

Just a partial list of Lieberman's LONG history of backstabbing Democrats to advance the Party of Joe:

  1. First Democrat to publicly grandstand on President Clinton's personal life.  Delivers long, sanctimonious speech on Senate floor attacking the President's "morality," and holds press conference just in case it wasn't clear which Democrat was the first to enable the Republican's epic Clinton witch hunt, culminating in the attempted impeachment coup d'etat of the still publically popular Bill Clinton.  Gratuitously undermining the first two term Democratic President in decades, in order to raise his own personal profile on the national scene.
  1. Calls for Censure of President Clinton, even AFTER his Senate acquittal.
  1. Flirts with Republicans on Privatizing Social Security, by suggesting individuals could put "some" of thier Social Security in the stock market.
  1. Refuses to resign his Senate seat after accepting Al Gore's VP offer, even knowing their election would HAND HIS SENATE SEAT TO REPUBLICANS, with CT Republican governor appointing his replacement.  At a time when Democratic/Republican control of the US Senate was at stake.  Joe put the Party of Joe FIRST, before his country or the Democratic Party, to make sure HE was safe no matter what happened in the Presidential election.  (An election, ironically, the Republican Supreme Court would hand to George Bush, Dick Cheney, and the Republican Party, so that they in turn could appoint more Republicans to the Courts.)
  1. Gives Dick Cheney a back rub on Nationally televised Vice Presidential debate.
  1. Calls for Florida election officials to count hundreds of illegal absentee ballots because they were from the 'military,' while ignoring thousands of Florida voters attempting to vote on election day thwarted by bad ballots and racial caging.
  1.  Courted by Bush Administration for UN Ambassador.
  1.  Kisses Bush after State of Union speech.
  1.  Opposes Sen. Feingold's Censure of George Bush for breaking the US Constitution, calling it "divisive," while defending Bush administration actions.
  1.  Refuses to abide by will of Democrats in CT Primary
  1.  CT Democrats Oust Lieberman in Senate primary.
  1.  Runs AGAINST Democratic Party nominee for CT Senate, inventing the "Connecticut for Lieberman Party."
  1.  Promises CT voters to remain a loyal Democrat even if elected as Independent, and that he wanted to "help elect a Democrat President in 2008."
  1.  Supported by Karl Rove, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and Rudolph Guiliani, among many other Republicans in independent Senate bid.
  1.  Opposes requiring hospitals to provide emergency contraception to rape victims if they, "Have principaled reasons against it."
  1.  Pens infamous Wall Street Journal Op-Ed attacking Democrats for criticizing GW Bush and Republican policies, "We undermine presidential credibility at our nation’s peril.”  
  1.  Promotes war on Iran, calling Democrats "politically paranoid, and hyperpartisan" in their opposition to Bush Administration.
  1.  Stops attending weekly Democratic Senate lunches because of 'discomfort' with Democratic Party.
  1.  Threatens to become Republican if Democrats oppose Iraq war.
  1.  Defends Bush Torture practices of waterboarding, saying, "It's not like putting burning coals on people's bodies."
  1.  Misses Senate votes while spending months campaigning for Republicans, specializing in telling Jewish voters in Florida that Obama is dangerous for Israel, while cheering Republican Party talking points, and leading boos of the Marxist terrorist loving Obama.
  1.  Jockeys for McCain VP slot, as "National Unity Ticket."
  1.  Attends Republican National Convention to bash Democrats, and Presidential nominee Barack Obama, on national TV.
  1.  Defends Sarah Palin as his Vice Presidential pick.
  1.  Begs Senate Democrats to keep his seniority and Chairmanships, saying he agrees with President-elect Obama that, "We must unite..."

Democrats SHOULD be "United."  

United that the Democratic Party must stand for something.  

And that means making sure the important chairmanships now controlled by Joe Lieberman are controlled by Democrats who supported Democrats, and the Democratic Party.  And Joe Lieberman is neither.  

Joe thought he had the Vice Presidency wrapped up this time.  He didn't care if it was with the Republican Party.

Joe, like many conventional politicians in 2007, thought America would never elect the "black guy," and hitched his wagon to the Republicans and John McCain.

That didn't work out so well.  For him.  

And now it's time we made it clear.  As the people who actually MAKE up this party.  The people who agitate, volunteer, donate money, and who were responsible for ELECTING a Democratic MAJORITY, and a Democratic President.

We stood up as Democrats.  And now we want our Leadership to stand up for us.

Harry, we WANT to support you.  We want you to support us.

But if Lieberman keeps his seniority and Chairmanships, it will say we mean nothing to you.

And if you relegate us to "meaninglessness," we can no longer support you as our Democratic Leader in the Senate.

Our country, our Constitution, our Party, and our President-elect mean too much to us.

Please make us proud to be Democrats tomorrow, and do the right thing.  Award the Chairmanship of the Homeland Security Committee to an actual Democrat.  After all this time in the wilderness, make the Democratic Party actually stand for something again.

Originally posted to recontext on Mon Nov 17, 2008 at 05:32 PM PST.

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