Disclosure: I worked for the Lamont campaign doing web design and production and some writing for the official blog (from 9/5/06 to 11/07/06).
Saturday, August 12, 2006
"Give It Up, Joe"
Former Lieberman supporter Jon Chait in the LA Times:
The night of his defeat, Lieberman tried to cast the result of the primary as illegitimate because "the old politics of partisan polarization won today. For the sake of our state, our country and my party, I cannot and will not let this result stand." But what does it mean that the politics of partisan polarization won? It means that Lieberman lost. It's a perfectly circular definition.
Moreover, it's increasingly clear that Lieberman's loss is his own fault. He was far too slow to recognize the seriousness of Lamont's challenge. He ended the campaign with $2 million unspent. And his decision to now run as an independent was a disaster, confirming the central accusation against him, which was that he cared more about his own standing than his party. If he had just declared in advance that he would abide by the result of the primary, he probably would have won, and he'd have Lamont campaigning for him today....
What's the point of running to uphold Democratic hawkishness when you're running against the Democratic Party and its chosen nominee? Lieberman is fighting on terrain that, from the perspective of the liberal hawks, could not be less advantageous.
It has stopped being a battle for the soul of the Democratic Party and become a battle for Lieberman to keep his prestigious job. If the ideas that he professes to value above all else are really his highest priority, he should drop out of the race.