"Partisan" Does Not Mean What Joe Lieberman Thinks It Means
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On Sunday, Joe Lieberman was asked about Brave New Films' Lieberman Must Go campaign when he appeared on Connecticut talk show "Beyond the Headlines," which airs on a local FOX affiliate. After Lieberman first attempted to deflect host Sherry Sindland's question with a trademark shrug and an awkward joke ("I'm definitely not going to sign that petition"), he accused Brave New Films of partisan politics. Meanwhile, he maintained that his unconditional support for John McCain is somehow "non-partisan."
Just to be clear, this is the same Lieberman who has publicly endorsed McCain and has traveled all over the country and the world on his behalf. The same Lieberman who has been pushing his hawkish support for Bush-McCain's deeply unpopular war in Iraq. The same Lieberman who has viciously attacked Barack Obama time and time again. And yet he is lecturing us about partisan politics?
Still, the very fact that Lieberman must now answer a question like this highlights the mounting tension around our call for the Democratic Steering Committee to strip Lieberman of his rank within the Senate. Last week's petition delivery, with all 43,000 signatures, commanded a slew of media coverage. It pressured Steering Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) to comment on MSNBC. And it was mentioned again on the front page of yesterday's New York Times, in an article about how Lieberman has alienated his former friends and allies in the Democratic party.
In fact, Bob Novak reports that Lieberman will be booted from the party's caucus if he addresses the Republican National Convention as planned. And still, Lieberman won't heed warnings from his own party, just as he won't listen to polls in his home state of Connecticut, where his approval rating has dropped below 50 percent while he has been out campaigning with McCain.
ZP Heller is the editorial director of Brave New Films. He has written for The American Prospect, AlterNet, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and The Huffington Post, covering everything from politics to pop culture.