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You Made It So, Joe

I haven’t been a fan of Joe Lieberman pretty much from the time I became aware of him. He was part of the group that moved the entire Democratic Party to the right during the Clinton administration, along with Clinton himself, via the Democratic Leadership Council. You see, you co-opt the Republican position, message, and morality, and you “hit them where they’re strong” (I believe that’s how he put it at a debate during one of his failed presidential runs). Of course, if you do that, you also end up passing Republican initiatives.

He also spoke out vociferously in the press about impeaching Clinton for that infamous Oval Office Oral Sex, one of the biggest non-issue issues in political history (but a very big issue of you’re, say, Hillary). It was, if memory serves, because of Joe’s “moral leadership” that Al Gore chose him as a running mate in 2000, as part of the strategy to separate Vice President Al Gore from President Bill Clinton, a move that probably handed the election to George W. Bush. No, I don’t blame Nader.

And then, of course, there are the recent Joe Lieberman years, which most of you will know about: the McCain endorsement for president in 2008, the watering down of the health care bill, the neo-con foreign policy approach… Even though Joe still caucuses with the Democrats, he very well might be the Republicanest of them all. Also, as Jon Stewart has also noticed, Joe Lieberman is very reminiscent of Droopy Dog.

But a little credit where credit is due. If you’ve been following the process of getting Don’t-Ask-Don’t-Tell repealed, you’ll know that it was Joe Lieberman who really made that happen. A few Republicans were keeping the repeal from passing on weird Senate rule procedural grounds, apparently because it was attached to a larger defense spending bill.

So Droopy Dog sprung into action. He worked with House Leader Steny Hoyer to pass a stand-alone bill in the House, while Joe lobbied for the votes in the Senate. By the time the House passed it, Joe had the votes to repeal the law.

And he was doing this, even as his good friend and preferred presidential candidate from 2008 (that would be John McCain) spoke out against repeal and in favor of continued discrimination in the military.

Sixty-three Senators voted to break the filibuster (sixty were needed). Sixty-five then voted to repeal the policy. Why those two Republicans who voted in favor of repeal didn’t vote to break the filibuster I have no idea. I guess that’s a question for Senator Ensign of Nevada and Senator Burr of North Carolina.

But without Joe Lieberman I just don’t see this repeal happening. So this morning, I put years of criticism aside. I ignore the differences I have with Senator Joe Lieberman to offer him my gratitude and thanks for ending a discriminatory, shameful policy.

3 comments on “You Made It So, Joe

  1. Said Joe Lieberman of Baldandeffective’s recent post, “You know what? I’m happy.”

  2. Melissa on said:

    Then he said, “I’m the hero.”

  3. OK, time’s up. I hate Joe Lieberman, that fuck.

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