Democrats & Liberals Archives

When Conservatives Hated Lieberman

They may love him now, but in 2000 they thought he was a sanctimonious flip-flopper who pandered to Louis Farrakhan. This National Review article from December 2000 makes for a juicy bill of particulars.

Some excerpts:

Even in a profession packed with egos, Joe Lieberman stands out. He sometimes brings to mind the old expression, "He'll die in his own arms."
So in Joe Lieberman, Al Gore got a bonus-not just Maimonides, but a partisan pit bull.
In another move apparently intended to shore up the black vote, Lieberman did what no major or respectable politician had done before: propose to meet with Louis Farrakhan, the demagogue and hater who has a larger following than most Americans suppose... On American Urban Radio, Lieberman said of Farrakhan: "I have respect for him."
Toward the end of the campaign, Lieberman told an interviewer, "You know, in my daily prayers I definitely pray for the election of 51-at least-Democratic senators." Lest anyone misunderstand him, he went on to say, "I'm confident, and, as I say, I hope-and underline 'pray'-that the Democrats elect 51 senators."
(Something to pull out of the file if he ever really bolts.)
What we are left with is Lieberman the orthodox Democrat, the plain old Democrat, no big deal in the age of Clinton-Gore (or should we say Clinton-Gore-Lieberman?). But there is still that awful veneer: the unctuousness, the moralizing, the posturing, the lectures, the sniveling, the "wrestling," the self-love.

So, is Lieberman is bad as they say? Of course not. I was genuinely shocked, however, that he had such nice words for Louis Farrakhan. And now liberals who oppose him are accused of being anti-Semitic. It is easier to "prove" that Lieberman is a self-hating Jew than to prove that his critics are anti-Semitic. (I don't think either is true.)

Lieberman wasn't as bad as they painted him then, and he isn't as good as they say now. He's a regular old pol. Stop with the crocodile tears.

Postscript: Tip of the hat to Joe Conason at Salon for finding this article.

Posted by Woody Mena at August 18, 2006 7:35 AM
Comments
Comment #176281

So this article, being critical of Lieberman’s policies and stand on some issues from 6 years ago, somehow means we HATED him? Isn’t that a little dramatic?

I see you highlighted the REALLY mean spirited parts of the article…where the nasty old conservative writer used a few less than flattering adjectives to describe Joe.

I know…we hate everyone right? It’s just a given. Talk about mischaracterization.

[In a whiny, high-pitched, nasal liberal voice, repeat after me ten times] “All conservatives hate everyone, especially those different from them. All conservatives hate Joe Liebermen. All conservatives hate all liberals, especially Hillary Clinton. All conservatives…just hate. Hate is their middle name. Hate is a Republican Party platform.”

I got news for you…I don’t hate anyone…not even you (although you might be in the top ten in case I decide to change my mind and start hating everyone. That ought to give you a little happy feeling inside).

I see this article was written fairly early this morning…do you just wake up in a bad mood…ready to lash out at conservatives from the moment you put your feet on the floor?

You know maybe if you got some cute little bunny slippers you wouldn’t be so angry this early in the morning…who can be angry when they are putting their feet into cute little bunny slippers first thing in the morning? I have been awake all night for 12 hours working and I am not that angry. And I haven’t even had my coffee.

So what is the point of this article, except to foment discord and seperation by once again portraying conservatives as bigots, thereby making you feel a little more smug and self righteous about yourselves? Anyone? Anyone?

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 18, 2006 9:03 AM
Comment #176282

So back then the liberals loved him and now THEY hate him. Did Lieberman change or did conditions change around him?

The differnece is that Lieberman is (or was) a Democrat. It would be natural for Republicans to oppose him at least sometimes. That is a dog bites man story. The interesting thing is that Dems not only oppose him, but seem to think it necessary to keep on kicking him.

The other interesting thing is that he will probably win as an independent. All those third party guys should be jubilant, but some of them don’t seem as happy as I would have expected.

If the leftish wing of the party keeps pushing these things, maybe the Dems will give birth to a third party. Maybe some moderate Repubicans can join. That is interesting. The leftish Dems would be out in the cold an so would the radical Republicans. It might be hard for activists to get used to it, but Lieberman types would represent the left wing and somebody like McCain or Guiliani would be the right.

Michael Moore would not longer be welcome except as comic relief.

Posted by: Jack at August 18, 2006 9:14 AM
Comment #176283

DaveR,

I appreciate your concern about my well-being, but I feel fine.

If you really want to know how this post originated, I have been thinking for a while that someone should look back and see what Republicans were saying about Lieberman back in the day. Then I say a link to this article and I saw it pretty much summarized conservative thought re Lieberman in one place. Easy as pie.

I don’t know why you think I am angry or hateful. I just cut-and-pasted some angry conservatives’ words. My own words are pretty non-committal (“he’s a regular old pol”). The hate is 100% imported.

Jack,

I’m not kicking Lieberman. Look at what I actually wrote. I’m knocking the Republicans who have suddenly decided he is a great statesman.

I’m not sure your point is. You seem to be implying that Dems should consistently support Lieberman, but Republicans are free to praise or bash him as the situation fits.

And that is really my point, that the current glowing praise for Lieberman from conservatives is a hypocritical facade. If you agree about that, we have nothing to argue about.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 18, 2006 9:26 AM
Comment #176284

Jack,

By the way, I have no problem with a political party where Giuliani is the most conservative member. That would be the most liberal party in America.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 18, 2006 9:30 AM
Comment #176286

When Democrats Hated Lieberman: A Rebuttal

“A lot of good Americans domiciled in Connecticut happen to think that they have the right to vote for someone other than Joe Lieberman. And while this may disturb elements of right-wing punditry, Lamont voters can plausibly claim to be doing so in the national interest.”

“As for the civility factor, Lamont may not be as politically pliable as Lieberman, but he is a gentleman, to be sure.”

“Almost everything Joe Lieberman’s supporters are saying about his Democratic primary loss to Ned Lamont is baloney.”

“Yes, many of them had initially backed the dream of a democratic Iraq radiating peace throughout the Mideast. But they now think that the Bush administration botched the job — and don’t care to have Lieberman question their patriotism when they say so.”

Ooohh…left wing media hatred of Joe Lieberman from a reporter for the Seattle Times!!

And more hatred of Joe…from Democrats!!

STEPHANOPOULOS: Do you think Senator Lieberman should get out of the race?

FEINGOLD:(Democratic Senator from WI) Well, you know, I think that’s his own decision. It would be better for the Democratic Party, I think it would be better for the people of Connecticut, it would be better for the country if he did it.

HATERS!! They want to get rid of him!! It would be better for everyone if you left Joe!! They hate you!! HATERS!!

See how ridiculous it sounds?

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 18, 2006 9:31 AM
Comment #176287

Nice try, but none of those quotes personally attack Lieberman. The harshest one says his supports are full of “baloney”.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 18, 2006 9:36 AM
Comment #176291

Woody—

-“I don’t know why you think I am angry or hateful.”

Actually, although I did in fact say you were angry, I never said you were hateful. We are only 6 responses into the thread and already you are putting words into my mouth. Where can this lead?

I admit I did say you were fomenting discord…which you are; and that you were feeling smug, which I think you [liberals] are. But don’t take that too personally…liberals are ALWAYS feeling smug about something. (I think it is genetic).

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 18, 2006 9:45 AM
Comment #176292

Now you are just splitting hairs.

Anyway, in case you couldn’t tell, which it seems you couldn’t, I was just being sarcastic while attempting to be humorous…apparently I failed miserably with the humor. I know I succeeded with the sarcasm…that was never in doubt.

Sarcasm is one of my most endearing traits…as my wife can attest.

Well, I have to take my toys and go home now. My evening is at an end. Don’t pop a cork Woody. In the larger scope of things, none of this is really all that important anyway. (But I still think you should do your feet a favor and look into those bunny slippers. Sponge Bob would make a good second choice, if bunnies ain’t your style).

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 18, 2006 9:52 AM
Comment #176298

“I have been thinking for a while that someone should look back and see what Republicans were saying about Lieberman back in the day.


Would it not be just the opposite of what democrats were saying?? Democrats believed he was the dest choice for VP now he is not worthy to be in the party. Hilarious! and this is over ONE issue.

Joe has always been one of the dems I have had great respect for. I even stated back in 2000 if the dems have reversed the ticket, I would have seriously considered voting democrat. This is best thing that could happen to him. He will win the election AND be an Independent and escape the sinking ship. I say GREAT!

Posted by: curmudgeon-at-large at August 18, 2006 10:25 AM
Comment #176299

DavidR, now you are picking on Sponge Bob. I like watching Bob, sitting along side my granddaughters.

Posted by: KT at August 18, 2006 10:32 AM
Comment #176304

DaveR, actually you were being sardonic. (thanks to Frazier for teaching me the difference)

sardonic

adj : disdainfully or ironically humorous; scornful and mocking; “his rebellion is the bitter, sardonic laughter of all great satirists”- Frank Schoenberner; “a wry pleasure to be…reminded of all that one is missing”- Irwin Edman [syn: wry]

sarcasm

n : witty language used to convey insults or scorn; “he used sarcasm to upset his opponent”; “irony is wasted on the stupid”; “Satire is a sort of glass, wherein beholders do generally discover everybody’s face but their own”—Johathan Swift [syn: irony, satire, caustic remark]

Posted by: gergle at August 18, 2006 11:02 AM
Comment #176313

DaveR,

You need to look yourself in the mirror and see what you are bringing to this table. “HATERS” all in capitals? Woody says nothing of the sort. Most, nay ALL of the quotes you list in your second post imply NOTHING of the sort.

Since when did voting an incumbent out of office become hating? I don’t hate Lieberman but I would certainly never vote for him (although I did when I voted for Gore in 2000). You are looking at it thru your own jaded and colorful glasses. Unless you are refering to “hating” and “hateful” in some comic pop hip-hop cultural way, ala Dave Chapelle, I’m afraid your way out of line.

Posted by: Chris2x at August 18, 2006 12:08 PM
Comment #176317

Chris2x—

WILL you please lighten up…stop taking yourself so seriously!!

““HATERS” all in capitals? Woody says nothing of the sort.”
I never clamied he did…I said it.

“I’m afraid your way out of line.”

Will you please go take your daily dose of Valium before your head explodes??

You are apparently another of those reactionary liberal bloggers who don’t take the time to actually read every post before launching into an outrageous tirade. I already said I was being sarcastic (or sardonic if you prefer as per gergle’s input) although how anyone reading that post [When Liberals Hated Lieberman: A Rebuttal] could possibly not see that for themsselves is beyond me. Maybe it is because paranoid liberals like you are always on the defensive looking for “hidden” messages or attacks. God forbid you JUST ONCE actually read something and take it at face value without assuming that it has some deeper, darker meaning.

Oh and by the way, in case you missed it…I am NOT being sardonic now! I am being dead serious. Understand the difference?

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 18, 2006 12:31 PM
Comment #176319

DaveR, you’re intellectual dishonesty and syllopsism only re-enforces the original post: when it comes to Lieberman, the Right is nothing short of transparently disengenious.

Posted by: Grubbery at August 18, 2006 12:38 PM
Comment #176320

Chris2x—

Up until now, I have not PERSONALLY attacked anyone!

I poked a little fun at Woody, and he got it. He didn’t get all offended and go on the defensive.

“(But I still think you should do your feet a favor and look into those bunny slippers. Sponge Bob would make a good second choice, if bunnies ain’t your style).”

I was accused of picking on SpongeBob by KT, (although how he got that from what I said I will never know). I happen to like SpongeBob. My wife has SpongeBob slippers, which I bought her, exactly like the ones I mentioned to Woody. (Of course maybe he was actually being sardonic too…or maybe he was also just making a JOKE!!).

But then YOU come along and start getting all serious and accusatory, implying that I put words into Woody’s mouth, which I never did…and saying that I am “out of line”…Ewwww so scary, what are you going to do now, censor me?

-“You need to look yourself in the mirror and see what you are bringing to this table.”

JUST RELAX WILL YOU!!!

I have been treating this whole thing as nothing more than a little light hearted banter from the very beginning, but you are getting your panties in a bunch for nothing!

Can’t a conservative even make a few little jokes without being accused of something? Sometimes you liberals just take yourselves WAY too seriously!! (Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean everyone isn’t out to get you, right)?

As your liberal peers in oh so many previous threads have told me…take a breath!!

Daver

Posted by: DaveR at August 18, 2006 12:50 PM
Comment #176321

KT—

-“DavidR, now you are picking on Sponge Bob. I like watching Bob, sitting along side my granddaughters.”

Feeling a little touchy this morning?

How did you get THIS (above)…from that(previous)?

Good for you and your granddaughters…I hope they have a better sense of humor than you do.

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 18, 2006 12:55 PM
Comment #176324

DaveR,

Don’t take ‘yourself’ too seriously. This entire thread is a big ho-hum, and you are part of it…

Posted by: Marysdude at August 18, 2006 1:11 PM
Comment #176325

Grubbery—

My intellectual dishonesty…WOW!! Where does that come from? And I will be honest…I don’t have the slightest idea what ‘syllopsism’ means…but I bet you impressed the hell out of yourself when you used it though!! Using those big words make you feel a little superior to everyone else?

Dishonesty about what? In what way was I being dishonest?

To be dishonest, don’t you first have to be making some claim to be dishonest about? I have been making jokes!! I guess you think they were ‘dishonest’ jokes (???)

Someone (maybe you?) please explain to me how you libs can read someone’s words right on the screen in front of you, and get such convaluted twisted meanings from what you see? How many times do I have to say this…READ MY WORDS, take them at FACE VALUE, and stop reading into what I say or looking for some hidden meaning or some secret message!!

It really isn’t a conspiracy, and there aren’t any subliminal messages hidden under the text.

JUST READ THE WORDS THAT ARE THERE…nothing more!!!

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 18, 2006 1:12 PM
Comment #176327

Marysdude—

Picking on the conservative again…I notice you didn’t mention anyone else by name.

I thought you libs were supposed to be concerned with building up people’s self esteem? You have just dealt mine a horrible blow. I am so hurt, might even become an independent now.


DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 18, 2006 1:19 PM
Comment #176329

Lieberman candidacy for the Vice Presidency was a bit of triangulation, to shore up things on Gore’s right flank. So folks who argue that we brought him on because he was a good little liberal misunderstand our so-called “love” for him.

Frankly it’s a laugh and a half that the Republicans are leaving their own candidate in the lurch to support this guy as a man of principle, especially given the fact that he hedged his bets as an incumbent by registering as both a Democrat and an Independent. A man of principle would have the guts to risk his political life as one or the other.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 18, 2006 1:24 PM
Comment #176330

lol… Grubbery, transcendent pontification anent verbose, oppugnant aspirant!

(Sorry, couldn’t resist)

Posted by: myles at August 18, 2006 1:37 PM
Comment #176331

Stephen,

But he IS principled! He’s standing up for the principle that the people who didn’t vote for him were wrong. ;)

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 18, 2006 1:39 PM
Comment #176332

Stephen,

Now I see your point about Schlesinger. You’re right. It is INCREDIBLY hypocritical for the Republicans to complain about the Democrats dumping Lieberman, when they are turning on their own candidate. He won the primary fair-and-square, and Bush won’t even endorse him.

How can they do that to poor Alan Schlesinger?! He is so wise, so principled, so kind… ;)

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 18, 2006 1:43 PM
Comment #176333

“A man of principle would have the guts to risk his political life as one or the other.”

SD - Why risk it if you can be “both”. Haven’t you heard? He is an “Independent Democrat”.

Posted by: DOC at August 18, 2006 1:48 PM
Comment #176334

…sliding towards being a Repulocrat

Posted by: myles at August 18, 2006 1:51 PM
Comment #176335

dam*… teach me about this preview button? meant Republocrat.

Posted by: myles at August 18, 2006 1:52 PM
Comment #176336

Democrat? Independent? If everyone called it what it truly is, it would be called the VoteforJoe Party.

Posted by: DOC at August 18, 2006 1:53 PM
Comment #176348

David I was just trying to add a little humor into the blog. Oh barancle’s, guess I will go get a crusty crab.

Posted by: KT at August 18, 2006 4:29 PM
Comment #176349

Woody,

This is another article from the Left with a completely wrong premise. I don’t love Lieberman. I know full well there were 17 other democratic senators who voted less liberally than Joe.

But I respect Joe. I respect any politician who stays true to their heart and doesn’t adhere to the party line just for politics’ sake.

So no, I wouldn’t vote for Joe (well, except in his race against bed head Ned) but I would be proud to shake Joe’s hand and proud to salute him if I was still active duty in the service.

Hopefully that clears things up for ya.

Posted by: Ken Strong at August 18, 2006 4:31 PM
Comment #176357

Ken Strong-
You mean stay true to your heart, right? This is the whole problem. You’ve got problems enough electing people of integrity in your own party without giving us advice on the people have it in our own. If he was so independent to begin with, he should have given up being a Democrat, and run from the start as an independent. If he was such a true Democrat, he should have accepted the voter’s verdict and supported Lamont, as Party members are supposed to do.

Instead, he goes off on his own, consorts with Republican pollsters, putting his money behind information that will help the GOP win more seats in Connecticut. It sounds pretty chickenshit to me.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 18, 2006 6:29 PM
Comment #176359

“But I respect Joe. I respect any politician who stays true to their heart and doesn’t adhere to the party line just for politics’ sake”

So you respect no republican politicians?
Me neither.

Posted by: Observer at August 18, 2006 6:38 PM
Comment #176381

DaveR,

Uh, O.K. Dave. I did take your comments at face-value except I was supposed read between the lines I guess. I’m not upset though and won’t bother with my liberally bunched up panties!

I can easily take you at your word that you are being light-hearted and just joking. But a few words of advice, if your jokes consist of nothing more than liberal bashing your audience here probably won’t find it very funny. And if your just trying to get kicks by pissing people off (I’m not one of them B-T-W) well…

But hey, my panties are just loosening up!

Posted by: Chris2x at August 18, 2006 10:29 PM
Comment #176395

Observer,

Vitriol and emotion, no response required for you.

Stephen Daugherty,

The article is regarding Republican feelings about Joe and then you twisted that into “don’t tell us how to run our party!”. Odd.

Yeah, my advice for those dems in CT who don’t like what Joe did, don’t vote for him. But his decision is not illegal, immoral, or unethical. Maybe he feels the Dem party is headed in the wrong direction with “cut & run” and appeasement policies and this is how he plans to bring you guys back to success. Plus, no matter what letter in parentheses comes after his name, I bet he’ll still votes very liberally in the senate once he wipes the floor in the general election. I’d personally vote for the conservative, but I’m smart enough to see what’s coming. Joe will get a lot of centrist (i.e. reasonable people) votes because he acts like he has a brain of his own instead of one issued by Howard Dean.

Posted by: Ken Strong at August 19, 2006 12:43 AM
Comment #176415

Ken,

I don’t think that conservatives “love” Joe. My whole point is that they are saying a lot of good things about him that having nothing to do with him and everything to do with him being useful at the moment. If he ever turns on Bush and his war they will turn on him like crazed jackals.

But I respect Joe. I respect any politician who stays true to their heart and doesn’t adhere to the party line just for politics’ sake.

That is what most conservatives are saying, but they used to say the exact opposite. He was seen as an opportunistic flip-flopper in 2000.

Incidentally, I didn’t “cherry-pick” as someone alleged. The article is overwhelmingly negative. I didn’t even quote the parts about him being a “whore” and being politically “horny”.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 19, 2006 8:22 AM
Comment #176437

Do you ever get the feeling radical rightwinger’s are constipated? Some exlax might keep the s**t flowing in the right direction and improve their mood.:)

Posted by: gergle at August 19, 2006 10:15 AM
Comment #176439

Woody, hmmm, and I kinda like horny whores. But Joe?? I have trouble with that image!!

Posted by: gergle at August 19, 2006 10:19 AM
Comment #176474

So…how come all you learned people arn’t telling it how it REALLY is? Lieberman voted to back “the war” because of what pile of money somebody laid in his hand? All the racist stuff is preposterous!

Posted by: jw fisher at August 19, 2006 2:09 PM
Comment #176605

I believe Senator Lieborman has a pretty decent AFL-CIO voting record. That means he will never be square with most of the Rep party that longs for third world labor standards and regards the cat’o’nine tails as a step forward in labor relations.

Posted by: BillS at August 20, 2006 11:01 AM
Comment #176638

Woody,

I have no doubt Republicans will challenge Joe very aggressively if he campaigns for the opposite side of some crucial vote in the Senate.

But politics are much like boxing. You’re always going to try to hit your opponent. It’s just sometimes you go in the ring respecting your opponent and sometimes you go in thinking the guy is a dehumanizing worm and you’ll get some juvenile enjoyment taking his head off.

Joe has clearly slated himself into the former category with regards to Republicans in my opinion.

So, despite my desire for a (R) from CT, I won’t lose any pride as an American watching Joe regain his seat in the Senate next term. It’s called “disagreeing with but still respecting” … a talent I haven’t seen too pervasive from the Left these last many years.

Posted by: Ken Strong at August 20, 2006 2:59 PM
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