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Monday, December 12, 2005

Is Lieberman nervous

According to the New Haven Register, Lieberman is alittle concerned about the Weicker factor.
Joseph I. Lieberman is sounding a tad nervous these days, which is odd for a three-term incumbent U.S. senator who is one of the Connecticut Democratic Party’s most popular elected officials.

It’s even more peculiar that one of Lieberman’s worries is a 74-year-old former Republican, former governor and former U.S. senator whose election loss in 1988 catapulted Lieberman onto the national stage.

But then, one of Lowell P. Weicker Jr.’s greatest talents always was his ability to get under the skin of other politicians.

Lieberman’s unflagging support of Republican President Bush’s determination to "stay the course" in Iraq has brought him increasing criticism from liberal Democrats and from anti-war activists.

Bush’s references to Lieberman in recent speeches defending his war policy have irritated some Democrats even more than the president’s famous kiss on Lieberman’s cheek nearly a year ago.
Concern from Lieberman, well yes but it is still unknown liberal anger towards the senator will generate to him losing the election next year.
National Democrats are desperately trying to recapture control of the U.S. Senate, and knocking off one of their own three-term incumbents isn’t part of that strategy. In Connecticut, Lieberman has become such a party institution that no Democratic loyalist is likely to risk taking him on over a foreign policy issue like Iraq.

Nor can Lieberman be worried that Republicans will find a major-league opponent capable of unseating him in 2006. Lieberman has crushed every GOP candidate brought against him since he narrowly won his first U.S. Senate contest.

Which brings us back to Weicker, who last week announced he was considering running as an independent U.S. Senate candidate next year to protest Lieberman’s pro-war stance. Weicker was the man whom Lieberman upset to take that 1988 victory.

Weicker came back in 1990 to win an independent campaign for governor. After four contentious years, Weicker left Connecticut politics, and most politicians in both parties were glad to see him go.

According to Weicker, he doesn’t want to run next year, but he will if no Democrat challenges Lieberman. Weicker said he is "100 percent opposed" to the Iraq policy being followed by Bush and Lieberman, a policy Weicker says is leading nowhere.

Neither Weicker nor any other experienced politician believes that he’d have any real shot to knock Lieberman off.

But it’s clear from Lieberman’s refusal to directly comment on the possibility of a Weicker protest run that it’s not something he wants to face. If Lieberman wasn’t irritated by the idea, he’d be laughing it off as a joke on the "Imus In the Morning" show or in other media interviews.

Weicker has specialized in being a political irritant since he first made national headlines as one of the few Republicans in Congress willing to criticize President Nixon over the Watergate scandal.

It’s unlikely that Weicker will actually carry out his threat. But he must certainly enjoy giving Joe a little nervous political indigestion.
We're all enjoying it also and it would be great for Connecticut if Weicker challenges him adn holds him accountable for his unwavering support for the president.