Joe Lieberman is no Progressive

Lieberman has stopped being a Progressive long ago, if he ever was.

“I’m a Democrat with a 35-year record of fighting for progressive causes, for the middle class, for civil rights, for women’s rights, for human rights and a lot more. I voted with my Senate Democratic colleagues 90 percent of the time.” — Joe Lieberman, 7/6/06

“I want Democrats to be back in the majority in Washington and elect a Democratic president in 2008.” — Joe Lieberman, 7/7/06

While Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) has fought for progressive policies in the past — such as protecting the environment and expanding civil rights — his recent record demonstrates that he’s a progressive no more. As this report documents, Lieberman has embraced the right wing on far more than foreign policy. In fact, he has betrayed progressive principles on a variety of domestic issues. As he has lurched to the right, Lieberman has actively worked to undermine the progressive agenda

[From Think Progress » Joe Lieberman: The Progressive Who Lost His Way ]

Click the link to see a long list of Lieberman siding with the Republicans.

Jane Hamsher has more reasons why Lieberman should be removed forcibly from the Democratic caucus1

Where to begin? Well, let’s start in 2000, when Senator Joseph Lieberman, the Democratic candidate for vice president—in response to pressure from the Bush campaign and without checking with his own—conceded hundreds of fraudulent overseas ballots supposedly from military voters that cost Al Gore the election, the notorious “Thanksgiving Stuffing.”

Let’s skip lightly over Lieberman’s part in the culture wars, his sanctimonious rebuke of President Clinton on the floor of the Senate at the start of the impeachment charade, and his critical role as part of the so-called “Gang of 14” breaking Democratic resistance to putting Samuel Alito on the Supreme Court. Let’s jump straight to Lieberman’s December 6, 2005 speech where he rebuked his party:

It is time for Democrats who distrust President Bush to acknowledge that he will be Commander-in-Chief for three more critical years, and that in matters of war we undermine Presidential credibility at our nation’s peril.

While Lieberman was quick to denounce Clinton for a private matter he leaped to the defense of Bush as even Republicans realized his strategy in the Iraq War was disastrous. Criticize George W. Bush and his conduct of the war and you’re a traitor.

Lieberman subsequently told the New Haven Register that he opposed legislation that would have required all publicly funded hospitals to provide Plan B contraception to rape victims, saying “it shouldn’t take more than a short ride to get to another hospital” (for which he earned himself the sobriquet “Short Ride.”)

[From Firedoglake » The Case Against Lieberman ]

Joe needs to go

Ms. Hamsher continues:

But it was with the 2008 presidential election that his bitterness became his rocket fuel. Lieberman was unbound. In addition to acting as McCain’s sidekick and protector, he stumped for Republican senator, campaigning for Susan Collins of Maine and Norm Coleman of Minnesota against their Democratic opponents.

Lieberman promised Reid privately that he would not attack Obama directly and personally. But when prevailed upon by the McCain operatives, Lieberman could not help himself. He played the paragon of decency even as he gleefully accepted the role of snarling attack dog:

He said that “Obama has not always put country first.”

He thought it was a “good question” to inquire whether Obama is a Marxist.

He misleadingly accused Obama of having “voted to cut off funding for our troops.”

He repeated the claim that “Hamas endorsed Obama” and said it “suggests the difference between these two candidates.”

He sent out an email for McCain, referring to the “Democrat” Party, the derogatory term of art preferred by the most partisan Republicans.

Lieberman went on to deride Obama in a speech before the Republican National Convention (after promising Reid he would not do so), saying he was an “an eloquent young man” who lacked the experience to be President. Reid’s office said that Lieberman’s seniority within the Democratic caucus, and his Chairmanship of the Homeland Security Committee might be in jeopardy. Obama’s press secretary Robert Gibbs went on CNN to declare that Lieberman engaged in “flat out lies.” But Lieberman would not let up against Obama.

  1. including a link to a petition calling for the same []

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