I guess if you’re the party chair you have to toe the party line…
DNC Chair Howard Dean welcomed the decision to keep Senator Joseph Lieberman as head of the Homeland Security Committee and, consequently, in the Democratic Caucus, saying the move was pragmatic, magnanimous and politically shrewd.
"You know, the desire of revenge is great, of course. But the truth is public policy doesn’t run on revenge very well," he said. "And when you see the trouble this country has gotten into in terms of foreign policy, where Bush basically ran a foreign policy based on petulance because he was mad at, for example, Mexico, for abstaining on the Security Council when the Iraq War came up, if you have to actually run the country, it is best not to do it based on feeling of anger towards your enemies."
"My point of view is that Barack won," Dean said. "He can afford to be magnanimous. And if we happen to win both recounts and Georgia, Joe is the 60th vote. And the truth is — and I certainly don’t have to defend Joe Lieberman because, you know, we have an interesting history — but the fact is, he does vote 90 percent of the time with the Democrats. And no, he shouldn’t have said all those things. But why not clean the slate? Why not start all over again? Why not allow him to vote with us on the 90 percent of the stuff? He will be a good vote on climate change — and this matters. He may be a good vote on election reform, which I hope we will get to. So, you know, he may end up – though it is a little against the odds — he may end up being the vote that allows us to conduct business when Mitch McConnell decides we shouldn’t."
That’s an awful lot of mays, Howard, and you should know better than to count on Joe’s vote for anything. Let me just clear something up, since the DNC Chair and almost 80% of the Democratic caucus seem confused about it:
Keeping Joe in the caucus, letting him keep his seniority and committee memberships: Magnanimous.
Letting Joe keep the chairmanship of a pivotal oversight committee where he’s done absolutely nothing to hold the Bush administration accountable on Katrina or anything else; making a mockery of party discipline by not imposing any consequences at all for actively slandering and campaigning against Democrats: Foolish.