Senate Democrats and Bill Clinton Stab Us In The Front
by Matt Stoller, Sun Oct 29, 2006 at 02:15:06 PM EST
In the Lieberman-Lamont fight, there has been a fair amount of handwringing over why Lamont isn't blowing Joe out of the water. Why, if Joe lost to Lamont, isn't he losing in the general? Why did Lamont let Joe get away? Well there are a number of reasons, but among the most prominent is the total abandonment of Lamont by the party establishment. And let's be very clear - this is not Lamont that they are abandoning, it's the party primary voters that they are abandoning.
Whether it was a standing ovation at a caucus meeting when Joe got back to the Senate after his primary loss, or Obama refusing to come to Connecticut or criticize Joe in any way, or Bill Clinton praising Lieberman on Larry King, or Harry Reid promising Lieberman seniority, or Chuck Schumer refusing to get involved and practically being forced to not back Lieberman after the primary, or insiders telling Lamont's campaign that they would talk Joe out of the race if Lamont didn't go on the attack, it's very clear that the Democratic Party leadership is rotten to the core. With the exception of John Kerry, Chris Dodd, Ted Kennedy, and Wes Clark, no high profile Democrats have been there for Lamont. (John Edwards is a bit more complicated, but the jury's still out.)
Here's the latest on Lieberman bragging about the seniority he'll have if he wins reelection. Make no mistake, these DC Democrats are only our temporary allies. They have total contempt for the rules of the party, and they cheered Joe after he faced us in the primary. It is no longer reasonable for them to call for party unity, because they no longer have any legitimate claim to call themselves leaders of the party. They may be leaders for the next few decades simply due to inertia, but it's very clear that Bill Clinton and Barack Obama are liars who think nothing of insulting Democratic primary voters who play by the rules.
The American people know this. They know that Democratic Senators are moral lepers, weaklings, and that is the only reason we aren't further ahead when the Republicans screw everything up. The Democratic Senate leaders will sell us out at every opportunity, be it torture, Iraq, Alito, Lieberman, the Bankruptcy Bill, or stopping war with Iran. They aren't poll-driven, they aren't fear-driven, and they aren't driven by strategic differences. They are simply driven to beat us down, their voters, by any means necessary. That's why they cheered Joe.
It's sad. Lamont can win this, and we're all doing our best to make that happen. But the important story here is not that the country supports the war, it doesn't. Lieberman is running on an antiwar platform, promising to bring the troops home in a transparently dishonest pander to the left. The important story here is that the DC Senate Democrats and DC lobbyists are not on our side. They have their own side, a side that is out of touch, immoral, and dishonest.
We can win this fight, as the polls are tightening. But it would be a whole lot easier without that knife in our back.