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Dash of Pepper

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Happy Pubbies?
Depressed Dems?
The Gazette Staff
McCain - Lieberman?
Last Monday, Senator Joe Lieberman (I - Conn.) popped up early on the FOX News morning program Fox & Friends with Senator John McCain to endorse his friend's candidacy for president of the United States.
The gist of Sen. Lieberman's message was that Sen. McCain has a strong record on national defense, he understands the gravity of the war on terror, and he has also proven able to rise above partisan politics on domestic issues. Early in November, Sen. Lieberman had criticized his former colleagues in the Democrat party, lashing out at what he called the "politically paranoid, hyper-partisan" liberal base and the opposition to the war which he said was not based on convictions on foreign policy, but on disdain for the Republicans. "The Democratic Party I grew up in was unafraid to make moral judgments about the world beyond our borders."
The pundits at FOX pondered a possible cabinet position for Lieberman in a McCain presidency. Sen. McCain said, in response, that Sen. Lieberman plays a very important role in the U.S. Senate and Lieberman responded that he saw the remainder of his public career taking place within the Senate.
This didn't stop commentators from wondering about a possible McCain/Lieberman ticket. It would be quite something if a former Democrat vice presidential candidate were to run on a Republican tickets as vice president - talk about crossing the aisle!
However, the big elephant in the room (pun intended) is the conservative vote. The base trusts neither senator on domestic issues, from taxes and fiscal issues, to major social issues, immigration and the touchy area of campaign finance reform.
The best, or worst, depending on your point of view, is that Lieberman's endorsement will split the independent vote in New Hampshire and damage the leading candidates - Romney, Huckabee and Giuliani.
While I admire and respect Joe Lieberman greatly, I would take issue with his statement that Senator McCain is a candidate who will unite the country. While Senator McCain has been, to his credit, a reliable supporter of the administration with regard to the war effort, he has a record of not being a uniter within his own party and, in fact, he has parted ways often with his colleagues, especially his conservative colleagues.
In addition to Senator McCain's ideological differences with the base (and platform) of his own party, I am suspicious of his temperament. There are old reports from the 1990s about his temper. I recall reports of one occasion at least, where he came close to a fist fight with a colleague he felt had betrayed him on a vote and other colleagues had to restrain him on the senate floor. Would his temperament be any more restrained in the White House?
All in all, 2008 shaping up to be a wild and wacky year!
Last Updated on Friday, 12 June 2009 15:32  

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