Tuesday, November 18, 2008

What to do about Joe Lieberman? (update 4)

By Michael J.W. Stickings

Senate Democrats will vote this morning to determine the fate of Republicrat Joe Lieberman. WaPo is reporting that two senators, Dodd and Salazar, will present a compromise to caucus that would "strip Lieberman of a low-profile subcommittee chairmanship, possibly one on global warming. But Lieberman would retain the gavel of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee."

In other words, despite opposition from the likes of Leahy and Carper -- but with support from Obama, Durbin, and others, Lieberman will likely keep his beloved chairmanship. (Which infuriates me, however much I may now be willing to give Obama the benefit of the doubt.)

And why will he be keeping it? Why isn't he being given the boot -- not just from the chairmanship but from the caucus generally? Well, as Cillizza explains, it's all about "personal loyalties," with Lieberman "benefiting from his relationships in a body where he has served since 1988." The "Old Guard," some of those elected before 2006, are simply "willing to forgive and forget." And, of course, though Cillizza doesn't go there, it's also about Obama, who apparently wants to keep Lieberman in the fold (and who is certainly in a position to get what he wants).

Anyway, we'll know soon enough.

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