Joe Lieberman Takes Center Stage by Lea Gilmore


“What after all is a Democrat like me, doing at a Republican party like this…,” stated Senator Joe Lieberman, a former Democrat and now Independent, opening his speech to the Republican National Convention last night.

Man oh man, what a difference eight years makes.

Just eight years ago, Joe Lieberman, a proud Democrat, was grasping the hand of then Democratic Presidential candidate Al Gore as Gore’s choice to be his Vice-Presidential running mate.

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Ready for prime-time and speaking with as much energy that he can muster, Lieberman went on attack. "Sen. Barack Obama is a gifted and eloquent young man who can do great things for our country in the years ahead," Lieberman said. "But my friends, eloquence is no substitute for a record — not in these tough times for America."

Well, isn’t that interesting. Let’s think this through a bit “eloquence is no substitute for a record.” Can these same words not be applied to Governor Sarah Palin? The Republicans, including shadow Republicans like Lieberman, are walking a slippery slope when they attack Obama on the experience issue. Especially taking into consideration a 72 year old presidential candidate who has fought off four occurrences of cancer, Governor Palin is literally a heartbeat away from being the most powerful leader in the known world. I would lay off the experience thing when Palin’s six years at the helm of Wasilla, Alaska population 7,000, combined with her 20 months as governor of Alaska doesn’t actually scream of the potential to negotiate with Putin and the bunch.

Last night, Lieberman either showed political courage, or pandering opportunism – maybe a bit of both. Click here for Lieberman’s speech.

Lieberman continued with an attempt to get those voter’s leaning on the fence, "Tonight, I want to ask you, whether you are an independent, a Reagan Democrat, a Clinton Democrat, or just a plain old Democrat: This year, when you vote for president, vote for the person you believe is best for our country, not for the party you happen to belong to.”

This rhetoric has understandably enraged Democrats.

When Lieberman stated in his speech that "In the Senate, [Obama] has not reached across party lines to get anything significant done, nor has he been willing to take on powerful interest groups in the Democratic Party." 

A swift reaction was given by Obama campaign advisor Robert Gibbs calling that a “flat out lie.” According to, Gibbs cited Obama’s work with Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Indiana, to keep nuclear weapons out of the hands of terrorists and with Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Oklahoma, on the government budget.

My 17 year old son said last night “how does that guy sleep at night?” I’m thinking, quite comfortably. He has placed all of his bets at the McCain/Palin table, and he believes America, no matter how disaffected and angry, just isn’t quite ready for that other team for a myriad of obvious and coded reasons.

If the Democrats win, Lieberman may just find himself in a political no-man’s land, but that’s OK too. Because, he will make millions on the conservative lecture circuit expounding on how he stood up to those “big bad liberals.” Ironically, it seems the “big bad Republicans” didn’t have the same courage he has displayed when he was at the very top of the list to become McCain’s Vice-Presidential running mate.

Tonight – Governor Sarah Palin speaks, and we will be listening.

Oh yeah, by the way I am so sick of hearing the term “maverick” used. It’s like calling Andy Williams “that new teen sensation.” If the term no longer applies, drop it.

Lea Gilmore