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Put Lieberman on a Short Leash, and Stop Feeding His Ego

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If you despise Joe Lieberman, why the hell are you giving him exactly what he wants: attention. Why do you think he was so happy being John McCain's bedbug. All this attention is doing nothing but feeding his ego and validating him to himself.

Since the Bush buss, Lieberman has been irrelevant, as no one takes him seriously. His McCain endorsement got him some attention, but not enough. So, he spoke at the convention. Still not enough. He then told us Sarah Palin was qualified to be president, that McCain's doctors had assured Lieberman that McCain would live to 85, and that he was unsure whether Barack Obama was a Marxist.

As the voters showed on election day, Joe Lieberman's opinion did not mean much. Even Jewish voters, whom Lieberman had tried to scare, voted for Obama in slightly higher percentages than they voted for John Kerry.

My first thought was that, in the spirit of unity, Lieberman ought be allowed back into the Democratic Caucus and to keep his Chairmanship, but only if he did penance -- "explain" his absurd statements and traitorous behavior. We all understand his votes, but he could have done what Chuck Hagel did, and endorsed no one; or, he could have endorsed McCain but otherwise stayed silent.

But none of that would have fed the enormous ego. So, yes, Joe Lieberman is one piece of hypocritical work. My mother, a Connecticut resident, reminds me that it was William F. Buckley, Jr. who launched Lieberman into the senate.

I think a better answer is just to put him on a short leash. No big hoopla, no tense meeting, no attention. Let him retain his chairmanship, but tell him what is expected. For example, I want to see him stumping Georgia for the next three weeks, lambasting John McCain for supporting Chambliss after Chambliss committed one of the most reprehensible acts in U.S. political history, as John McCain himself said at the time. I want to hear him tick off Chambliss's votes against veterans, attack Chambliss's seven deferments and extol the virtues of Ed Martin who answered the country's call and served in Vietnam while Chambliss walked away on his "bum knee." I want to hear Lieberman tell people that he has not seen Chambliss limping.

Following the Georgia run-off, Lieberman's short leash would include his votes and his public statements. For example, Lieberman should be told that he must support Reid on cloture whether he agrees with the bill in question or not. If he does not vote along with Reid on cloture once, the chairmanship is history. Once cloture is achieved, and only 50 votes are required, how Lieberman votes will likely be meaningless, but, as part of the short leash, Lieberman should be told that if his vote is the deciding vote, and is contrary to the majority of the caucus, then hasta-la-vista-baby to the chairmanship.

If Lieberman does not measure up, and loses his chairmanship and bolts the caucus, that will be his choice. The caucus will neither be adorned by his presence, nor notice his absence.

Or as Groucho, that other great Marxist, sang as the Lord High Executioner in the Mikado, "he never will be missed, he never will be missed."