December 18, 2003


Lieberman Unbound: Willing to try anything to save his candidacy, Joe decides to detonate his own Democratic Party (Harold Meyerson, 12/18/03, LA Weekly)

Clearly, Lieberman has gone on the attack because he has nothing to lose. The New Hampshire primary is just six weeks away; and Saddam’s arrest, he’s calculated, gives him probably his last opportunity to reshape the race. Problem is, what Lieberman needs to reshape is his party. [...]

Dean is no George McGovern — he’s far too pugnacious — but the parallels between Lieberman and McGovern’s chief rival in the 1972 primaries, Washington Senator Henry “Scoop” Jackson, are striking. Jackson ran as the one Democratic candidate who still supported the war in Vietnam, a position that ensured he would fail to win the nomination just as surely as Lieberman’s pro-war adamance condemns Joe to finishing out of the money this year. But as the campaign season progressed, Jackson increasingly saw his mission as bringing down McGovern no matter what. It was Jackson who termed McGovern – a middle-American Methodist if ever there was one – the candidate of “acid, abortion and amnesty.” By the time Scoop and his ilk were done with McGovern, the Nixon re-election campaign hardly needed to take the field.

Joe Lieberman is Scoop Redux, willing to blow apart his party in a last-gasp attempt to resurrect his own failed candidacy.

You'd think it would be worth noting that, since 1972 (inclusive), every presidential election has been won by the GOP or a born-again Southerner. Maybe the party needs to be blown apart.

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 18, 2003 9:27 PM

Since someone like Meyerson will never believe their ideas failed, only their vessel in presenting them, they won't even accept an "I told you so" by Lieberman after next year's elections as being legitimate and beneficial to the party. They'll simply say Dean wasn't as good a "people person" as Bill Clinton and tell Joe and his politics to take a hike.

Posted by: John at December 18, 2003 10:22 PM

If Joe is so impotent, why disparage him?

If McGovern was so normal, why does he evoke such shudders still today?

If Myerson were sane, why didn't this show up in the WaPo?

Posted by: jim hamlen at December 18, 2003 10:58 PM

If there really is a Julia Roberts, why has she never been in a movie with Eric?

Posted by: oj at December 18, 2003 11:03 PM

I was talking with someone recently, whose theory was that Dean would dispatch Gephardt, Kerry, and Edwards in the first three straw poll/primaries, and that Lieberman and Clark would be the only ones left to be the "anti-Dean" candidate.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen at December 19, 2003 11:57 AM

Maybe Lieberman is running for the VP slot... on the Republican side.

Posted by: Mike Earl at December 19, 2003 2:18 PM

Try this on for size. Joe is a man of principle who istrying to rescue his party, the party of Jackson, Wilson, FDR and JFK from a bunch of howling moonbats. Swing hard Joe. You might hit it.

Posted by: Robert Schwartz at December 20, 2003 1:22 AM

Lieberman won't achieve Scoophood until he renounces Clinton as well. The events of the last two weeks show that he is still suckling on that nipple.

Posted by: jim hamlen at December 20, 2003 1:37 AM