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A Match Made In Washington: The Chosen Ones


I'd like to say that I am happy to announce the winners of the Match Made in Washington Quote Off — but neither "happy" nor "winners" seem like appropriate words to use in this context, frankly.  So, instead, I'd like to reveal the chosen quotes and the folks who posted them this morning — and we can let the distribution of prizes begin.

But let me start with a more recent quote that tells you everything you need to know about Turncoat Joe.  From the Courant:  “Lieberman now tries to steer the debate away from the wisdom of the original decision to invade, a vote that Gerstein said Lieberman does not regret and would cast again.”  (emphasis mine)   Oh, bless the person who decided to let Gerstein start talking with the press again.  Keep it up! 

But, back to the contest.  First, the chosen quote from Joe Lieberman, which was submitted by Hugh — I give you L16:

Flip:  December 8, 2005  “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”

Flop:  September 13, 2006 (After losing the Democratic Primary to Ned Lamont)  “It is wrong for some on the right to imply that some Democrats don’t care if the terrorists succeed, or that debating the merits of the president’s policies on the war on terrorism emboldens our enemies”  /2006/9/15/205802.shtml  (submitted by Hugh)

And the Bush quote which was selected as the most egregious example of Iraq idiocy?  That would be B12, submitted by Disgusted in St. Louis:

Bush quote from his Major Combat Operations in Iraq Have Ended speech from May 1, 2003:  "Major combat operations in Iraq have ended. In the battle of Iraq, the United States and our allies have prevailed. And now our coalition is engaged in securing and reconstructing that country."  (submitted by Disgusted in St. Louis)

Well, at least we don't have to worry about too much honesty and integrity for the public to handle from those two, do we?

In fact, Cliff Schecter documents why it is that the public should get to know the real Turncoat Joe this morning in an article for AlterNet. 

…It is this willingness to say or do whatever is necessary to hold on to his U.S. Senate seat, damn the consequences to what he claimed to believe last year or even last week, that makes Lieberman, a smarmy, power-hungry little yapping poodle of a politician, the perfect poster-boy for the amoral might-makes-right culture that currently animates our political system.

Ever since Lieberman defeated elder statesman Weicker in that 1988 race, largely by portraying him as weak on Communism — along the way garnering the support of William F. Buckley and the McCarthy-loving National Review — there hasn't been a single issue on which Lieberman has been willing to risk an unpopular position or maintain a modicum of consistency….

Last year Lieberman thought John Bolton wasn't worthy of being U.N. ambassador and voted accordingly. Yet, now that he needs Republican votes to win his do-over bid to hang on to his job, Bolton — a "person" who has chased subordinates around a hotel trying to shoe-beat them — has suddenly become the second coming of Adlai Stevenson or Daniel Patrick Moynihan on the international stage.

This propensity for changing positions like Angelina Jolie adopts children has been rightly covered and mocked by members of the Connecticut media and Lieberman's opponents. From support for privatizing Social Security to abortion rights, school vouchers to gay rights, there is not an issue that Lieberman won't jettison if it becomes politically expedient to do so. Yet, a few of Lieberman's more craven political maneuvers — and their disastrous results — have not received a full airing….

Lieberman, of course, also co-sponsored the Senate Resolution allowing the president to wage war on Iraq, and has made pronouncements about progress there over the past few years that have led many observers to question his sanity. Yet, learning nothing from his impressive degree of wrongness about everything in Iraq, Lieberman now refuses to set any timetable for withdrawal and speaks of preemptive war in Iran, presumably to be fought with a clone army of some sort….

Yet, most disturbing for someone so ready to send other people's children into bogus wars, is his lack of commitment to those troops once they come home. While Lieberman was once quoted by the New Yorker saying "some of my best friends are neocons," the same can't be said about veterans.

In 1997, Republican Sen. Strom Thurmond offered a motion to kill an amendment authored by Minnesota legend Paul Wellstone that would have required the secretary of defense to put $400 million into veteran's benefits the following year. Lieberman joined the Thurmond assault on veterans. He also opposed efforts to increase health care spending for veterans by $13 billion over five years in 1996 and an amendment offered by Sen. Tom Harkin to transfer $329 million from defense accounts to the Veterans Affairs Department for health care programs.

He has, however, continued to find billions of dollars to support missile defense programs that have shown as much promise as Tucker Carlson on "Dancing with the Stars."

This is must read material, gang — great stuff here, so much more than in this excerpted bit, so kudos to Cliff for putting all of it together.  That Scaife campaign donation to the Turncoat Joe makes more and more sense after you read the article — as if you didn't already know what Scaife was buying anyway. 

And for every DC Democrat who has been sitting back and hoping the netroots and the bloggers would take care of their Lieberman problem for them so that they wouldn't have to get their hands dirty, I say stop being such freaking cowards and step up to the plate.  The time is now to stand up and be counted — you are either with the will of your Democratic voters or you are nothing but an incumbancy protection racket.  And right about now, I'd say motivating your Democratic voters with a show of spine could prove to be a much more effective means of turning out the base than sucking up to the "Everybody Loves Lieberman" party of one, wouldn't you?

Try contemplating where your bread actually gets buttered for a change and get your ass to Connecticut.  If you aren't standing up for Democratic voters, ask yourself why not…but do so on the way to campaign for a real Democratic candidate, and not some ego-driven phony.  You want to know what motivates all of us?  Better government — don't make us start to ask if the government wouldn't be better off without you in it, too.

Speaking of getting to Connecticut, the Lamont campaign is still looking for volunteers to get out the vote.  (You can find contact information here and canvassing and scheduling information here.)  They'd also appreciate it if you could take a few minutes and send a postcard through their Friends and Family program to folks that you know in CT, urging a vote for Ned Lamont — it only takes a few minutes, but it could mean the deciding vote, so won't you take the time today?  (Thursday is the last day for this, so please do this now if you can!) 

If you can't get to Connecticut, then volunteer to do the same for a progressive candidate near you.  Or make calls via the program.  But do something to get out our vote — because you don't want to be sitting there on election night wishing that you had done more.

Had enough? 

(If Hugh and Disgusted in St. Louis could e-mail me, at ReddHedd at AOL dot com, with their address information, I can have prizes sent out this week for everyone.  Hugh wins a copy of "State of Denial" and Disgusted wins a copy of "Brainless," and both win copies of the Robert Greenwald films "Iraq for Sale" and "Outfoxed."  Kudos to the two of you!)

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Christy Hardin Smith

Christy Hardin Smith

Christy is a "recovering" attorney, who earned her undergraduate degree at Smith College, in American Studies and Government, concentrating in American Foreign Policy. She then went on to graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania in the field of political science and international relations/security studies, before attending law school at the College of Law at West Virginia University, where she was Associate Editor of the Law Review. Christy was a partner in her own firm for several years, where she practiced in a number of areas including criminal defense, child abuse and neglect representation, domestic law, civil litigation, and she was an attorney for a small municipality, before switching hats to become a state prosecutor. Christy has extensive trial experience, and has worked for years both in and out of the court system to improve the lives of at risk children.

Email: reddhedd AT firedoglake DOT com