Joe Lieberman (Loser – Connecticut) suddenly realized words matter.
Sen. Joe Lieberman pleaded with Democratic bosses Thursday to keep his job as chairman of the Homeland Security Committee after stumping ceaselessly for GOPer John McCain.
It may be too late for Lieberman (I-Conn.), a former Democrat, whose non-stop campaigning for McCain angered President-elect Barack Obama, insiders confirmed to the Daily News.
“You don’t run around the country campaigning for McCain and saying you’re afraid the Democrats will get a 60-seat [filibuster-proof] majority, and then beg to keep your chairmanship,” said a senior Democratic source.
Harry Reid is not impressed either:
Reid offered Lieberman a chance to stay in the Democratic caucus, keep his seniority, and become the chairman of some other committee. Lieberman thinks that’s “unacceptable” and reportedly “begged” to stay on as chairman of Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs.
Bayh thinks this is about “revenge or retribution.” It’s not. For that matter, it’s only partly about holding Lieberman accountable for his betrayals. This is actually about a specific power Lieberman is intent on keeping for a specific reason.
This seems to be routinely overlooked, but take a moment to consider what the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs actually does: it’s the committee principally responsible for oversight of the executive branch. It’s an accountability committee, charged with investigating the conduct of the White House and the president’s administration.
As chairman of this committee for the last two years, Lieberman decided not to pursue any accusations of wrongdoing against the Bush administration. Lieberman’s House counterpart — Rep. Henry Waxman’s Oversight Committee — was a vigilant watchdog, holding hearings, issuing subpoenas, and launching multiple investigations. Lieberman preferred to let his committee do no real work at all. It was arguably the most pathetic display of this Congress.
And yet, now Lieberman acts as if keeping this chairmanship is the single most important part of his public life. Why would he be so desperate to keep the gavel of a committee he hasn’t used? I’ll let you in on a secret: he wants to start using the power of this committee against Obama.
Lieberman didn’t want to hold Bush accountable, but he seems exceedingly anxious to keep the committee that would go after Obama with a vengeance, effectively becoming a Waxman-like figure — holding hearings, issuing subpoenas, and launching investigations against the Democratic president.
Lieberman doesn’t care about “reconciliation,” he cares about going after a Democratic administration. Why else would he fight diligently to be chairman of one committee instead of another?
[From The Washington Monthly]
Apparently, the vote is going to be extended out to the full caucus, and the Democratic Party better do the right thing, and kick Lieberman out on his droopy-dog keister. The difference between 57 votes and 58 votes is not significant enough to matter.