Reporting accurately on Reid's options with Lieberman

The Progressive blog world has been on fire this week with tales of Senator Joe Lieberman campaigning for Republicans in Connecticut. But, as Stephen Elliott said Friday in the Huffington Post, it may or may not be accurate, depending on how you view Lieberman's public appearance with Republican candidates Jodi Rell (Governor) and Rob Simmons (House of Representatives) at a gathering to celebrate the Groton submarine base surviving years of national military-base closures.

So is something like this "campaigning" with Republicans or isn’t it? Frankly, if I were on Rell's staff, I would worry that appearing with Lieberman would make her look too conservative but, as the Hartford Courant said simply on Thursday, "Lieberman will appear with two prominent Republicans, Gov. M. Jodi Rell and U.S. Rep. Rob Simmons, R-2nd, to celebrate last year's reversal of a Pentagon decision to close the Groton submarine base."

Does a mere appearance to celebrate some very good news for the people of Connecticut -- even with GOP candidates there -- mean that Lieberman is campaigning with them? Simmons certainly didn’t waste too much time hawking his appearance at the Groton base on, yes, his campaign web site, so one could indeed reasonably construe it as a campaign event.

And I can also understand why this angers Progressives so much as we are at a time of political war, with a bit over two months until the midterm elections and, if I were a Democratic candidate, even bumping into a Republican pol at my local Starbucks would be too close for comfort.

Smarter people than me are going to have to parse through this one.

What I'm more concerned about, as your humble correspondent on the U.S. Senate, is one facet of how some Progressive bloggers are going after Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid and demanding that he quickly, publicly and harshly neuter Lieberman for the pain he is causing a party that stuck with him for so many years.

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