August 7, 2006


One Party America? (Richard H. Shriver, 07 Aug 2006, Tech Central Station)

The most current evidence of the Democratic Party's self-destruction is the Democratic primary race for the US Senate in Connecticut, pitting 3-term veteran against antiwar candidate Ned Lamont.

According to local polls, Lamont will win the primary forcing into play Lieberman's defensive move of forming his own party to be on the ballot one way or another in November. The token Republican candidate, Alan Schlesinger, will garner 8% - 15% in the general election, and for a variety of reasons, may even withdraw; Lieberman is expected to win in a three-way (and more-so in a two-way) vote in November, thus depriving the Democrats of an important seat in the Senate.

Lieberman will win because Republicans will vote for this Democrat in droves.

Does anyone know whether state law allows the GOP to replace Mr. Schlesinger when he withdraws?

MORE (via Tom Corcoran):
Lieberman:L The "peace" Democrats are back. It's a dream come true for Karl Rove. (MARTIN PERETZ, August 7, 2006, Opinion Journal)

I was there, a partisan, as a graduate student at the beginning, in 1962, when the eminent Harvard historian H. Stuart Hughes (grandson of Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes) ran for the U.S. Senate as an independent against George Cabot Lodge and the victor, Ted Kennedy, a trio of what in the Ivies is, somewhat derisively, called "legacies." Hughes's platform fixed on President John F. Kennedy's belligerent policy towards Cuba, which had been crystallized in the "Bay of Pigs" fiasco. The campaign ended, however, with Hughes winning a dreary 1% of the vote when Krushchev capitulated to JFK just before the election and brought the missile crisis to an end, leaving Fidel Castro in power as an annoyance (which he is still, though maybe not much longer), but not as a threat.

Later peace candidates did better. Some were even elected. Vietnam was their card. One was even nominated for president in 1972. George McGovern, a morally imperious isolationist with fellow-traveling habits, never could shake the altogether accurate analogies with Henry Wallace. (Wallace was the slightly dopey vice president, dropped from the ticket by FDR in 1944, who ran for president on the Progressive Party ticket, a creation of Stalin's agents in the U.S.) Mr. McGovern's trouncing by Richard Nixon, a reprobate president if we ever had one, augured the recessional--if not quite the collapse--of such Democratic politics, which insisted our enemy in the Cold War was not the Soviets but us.

It was then that people like Joe Lieberman emerged, muscular on defense, assertive in foreign policy, genuinely liberal on social and economic matters, but not doctrinaire on regulatory issues. He had marched for civil rights and is committed to an equal opportunity agenda with equal opportunity results. He has qualms about affirmative action. But who, in his hearts of hearts, does not? He is appalled by the abysmal standards of our popular culture and our public discourse. Who really loves our popular culture--or, at least, which parent? He is thoroughly a Democrat. But Mr. Lieberman believes that, in an age of communal and global stress, one would do well to speak with the president (even, on rare occasion, speak well of him) and compromise with him on urgent matters of practical law.

Yes, Mr. Lieberman sometimes sounds a bit treacly. He certainly is preachy, and advertises his sense of his own righteousness. But he has also been brave, and bravery is a rare trait in politicians, especially in states that are really true-blue or, for that matter, really true-red. The blogosphere Democrats, whose victory Mr. Lamont's will be if Mr. Lamont wins, have made Iraq the litmus test for incumbents. There are many reasonable, and even correct, reproofs that one may have for the conduct of the war. They are, to be sure, all retrospective. But one fault cannot be attributed to the U.S., and that is that we are on the wrong side. We are at war in a just cause, to protect the vulnerable masses of the country from the helter-skelter ideological and religious mass-murderers in their midst. Our enemies are not progressive peasants as was imagined three and four decades ago.

If you can make it to your grave without ever having to use "we" when describing such an obviously idiotic idea you'll have led a great life.

Posted by Orrin Judd at August 7, 2006 11:33 AM

"State law allows"? Your faith is amusing...

The CT Republican Party should have a speech all prepared that says something along the lines that "The GOP is the real big-tent party, and even though Joe is not in full agreement with all of the positions of the national party, he is welcome to come across the aisle, since we do not purge long-standing members for reasons of single-issue, hateful, extremist politics."

Posted by: b at August 7, 2006 11:44 AM

The best thing for Schlesinger to do would be to run and represent conservative values, but (unless the polls show some sort of divine intervention in his favor) spend the last week of the campaign encouraging voters to vote for Lieberman.

Posted by: Andrew X at August 7, 2006 12:08 PM

He can't:

Posted by: oj at August 7, 2006 12:16 PM

Well, I see according to the link why the GOP might want someone else to run. But if Schesinger wins the primary, I can't see why he is precluded from doing as I write if the polls show him down by 30 points or something in October. He can ask his supporters to write in Stalin's name if he wants. He can ask whatever he wants of them. That's his free speech. And we all get to judge him, as voters, as Republicans, as Connecticanians (if we are), however we want, and choose to do as he asks or ignore him.

Posted by: Andrew X at August 7, 2006 2:22 PM

"That's his free speech. "

At least until Senator Keating-McCain gets his way and purges all free speech from political campaigns.

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at August 7, 2006 4:41 PM

Re: the word, "progressive."

About a year ago I read a book whicn was purported to be the official Soviet after-action report on their quagmire in Afghanistan. Pretty dry stuff with a lot of tac maps with military symbols--you know,all those arrows and little boxes with symbols for differennt kinds of forces.

The striking thing was the Communist butchers' name for themselves. You guessed it, they called themselves, "progressives." Think of this whenever one of our home-grown commonists tries to call himself that.

Posted by: Lou Gots at August 7, 2006 5:38 PM

Flawed/imderfinanced/imcompetent Republican candidates in the northeast tend to fade into the background as Election Day moves closer, since the media for the most part disdains them to begin with and feels no need to throw them a life preserver by giving their struggling campagins any high-profile coverage (odds are most people still won't know the names of the New York State GOP gubernatorial or senate candidates by mid-October this year). But this one is going to be interesting, assuming Lieberman loses on Tuesday and runs as an independent.

In a three-way, making Schlesinger, or whoever the GOP goes with, fade into the ether means a greater chance of Republicans bolting the party on the senate line to go with Joe. So you could see the weird situation of the press trying to built up the Republican nominee into a seemingly viable candidate in order to disuade as many Connecticut Republicans as possible from going halfway across party lines and helping to deny Lamont a trip to Washington.

Posted by: John at August 7, 2006 9:50 PM

Lieberman's approval rating is down about 17 percent among both Republicans and Independents since a year ago.

About 70 percent of Connecticut residents oppose his position on Iraq.

What kind of moonbats would ever dream that it's time for him to go?

Posted by: Rick Perlstein at August 7, 2006 11:49 PM

he's only going across the aisle.

Posted by: oj at August 8, 2006 1:49 AM

Mr. Perlstein, from your lips to God's ears. Senator Lamont has a nice ring to it and his amazing feat of unseating a popular northeast liberal, albeit with a little help from his uber-leftist friends, won't be lost on his colleagues.

What fun. Two years leading up the presidential election of 2008 and the lunatic fringe out of the closet and bloviating in full view of the admiring world.

I don't know if Bushco's collective heart will be able to take it. I sure hope mine will because I intend to do some mighty fine gloating.

Posted by: erp at August 8, 2006 11:15 AM