07/20/2006 01:52 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Lamont Leads Lieberman in Polls, Bill Clinton On the Way (UPDATED)

According to Political Wire:

In the Connecticut U.S. Senate race, Ned Lamont (D) has surged ahead of Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-CT) and now holds a razor-thin 51% to 47% lead among likely Democratic primary voters, according to a new Quinnipiac poll.

Joe's internal polling must have told him this was coming because on the same day it's being announced that Bill Clinton will be here in Waterbury on Monday to campaign for him and try and stop the hemorrhaging.   Big Dog may not have taken it personally when Lieberman stabbed us all in the back with his speech on the floor of the Senate during the impeachment hearings, but many of us did.  Loyalty to machine politics runs deep.

I spoke to Tom Swan, Ned's campaign manager, who said:

We're disappointed that President Clinton isn't content to abide by the results of the Democratic primary, and we hope the President convinces Joe to respect the will of Democratic voters.  We look forward to having him come back and campaign for us in the fall.

There will be much to celebrate when local bloggers, members of the campaign and the Kiss Float (above) meet up tonight in Branford at the Owenego Inn.

I wonder how Big Dog is going to like the Kiss Float?

. The irony of millionaire Joe Lieberman calling out Ned Lamont for being a millionaire is getting a bit stale.  Joe and his "Kiss My Ring" party tried to extend its short shelf life today by suggesting there was something untoward about a $50,000 investment Lamont had in Halliburton.  But Lieberman had no problems with the filthy millions Dick Cheney made from Halliburton when they had their timid 2000 debate:

LIEBERMAN: Dick Cheney must be one of the few people who think nothing has been accomplished in the last eight years. Promises were made and promises were kept. Has Al Gore — did Al Gore make promises in 1992? Absolutely. Did he deliver? Big time. Let me put it that way. That’s the record. Look at the 20 — look at the 22 million new jobs. Look at the 4 million new businesses. Look at the lower interest rates, low rate of inflation, high rate of growth. I think if you asked most people in America today that famous question that Ronald Reagan asked, "Are you better off today than you were eight years ago?" Most people would say yes. I’m pleased to see, Dick, from the newspapers that you’re better off than you were eight years ago, too.

CHENEY: I can tell you, Joe, the government had absolutely nothing to do with it. 

I guess money just looks better on Republicans.

.  Meanwhile over at the New York Times they are digging into Lieberman's campaign finances and unearthing a story of money from a lot of war profiteers and their PACs who customarily donate to Republicans.  So far Lieberman has amassed an ungodly campaign war chest of $8.5 million with 80% coming from outside Connecticut, the highest rate of any incumbent Senator.  His out-of-state campaign manager Sean Smith takes the opportunity to sniff at the meager contribution from the local Hardwood Federation:

That national group, whose president runs a hardwoods company in Connecticut, has contributed $7,500 to Mr. Lieberman.

“It doesn’t mean much to us,” said Sean Smith, Mr. Lieberman’s campaign manager.  “If people give us money because they support us, that’s great. But Joe Lieberman is under no obligation to support them."

Sure hope they weren't hoping for an invite to the coronation ball or anything for that kind of pittance.  

I think it's fair to ask, as Matt Stoller does the Lieberman campaign melting down? The Norwalk Democratic Township Council just passed a resolution censuring Lieberman for threatening to leave the Democratic party.  Certianly not an auspicious omen.  (via LamontBlog)

.  In the LA Times, Duncan Black (Atrios) has a word for all the breathless pearl-clutchers like Lanny Davis who see the primary challenge to Lieberman as naked barbarism and unprescedented savagery:

Politics is a contact sport. Those who would paper it over with a veneer of false propriety are pretending it’s something that it is not. More than that, loud and raucous debate is a healthy part of our democracy.

Lanny might note that Rush Limbaugh and the eliminationist wingnut posse reguarly call for things like the lynching of activist judges.  It's really remarkable he would be swooing on the fainting couch just because liberal bloggers drop a couple of "f" bombs.  

.  There is a very good interview at Skippy the Bush Kangaroo with Dr. Richard Handley of the Quinnipiac School of Communications (where much of the local Connecticut polling is being done), who had this observation:

[B]logs certainly play a role in galvanizing existing support for both men, but there is no firm evidence to suggest that content on blogs is driving the momentum of the race either way. If anything, it is validating pre-existing positions.

This ought to save the Lieberman supporters a small fortune in smelling salts.

.  Local columnist and radio show host Colin McEnroe concurs that the Lieberman crew are suffering from a profound misunderstanding of their blogospheric opposition:

I think the Lieberman retinue has been collectively freaked out by the way their internet opponents express displeasure. I think that has kicked them all into a very paranoid mode. Paranoid people make bad decisions.  I think this has started to look, to them, less like an election and more like some kind of nightmare or fairy tale in which they are pursued through the woods by thugs and rabid dogs. They’ve almost forgotten that they’re running against Ned Lamont. They’ve identified, as their true opponent, a mob of crazy bloggers who will say anything and stop at nothing. The rest of the world, however, can’t see the bloggers, so a lot of Lieberman’s desperate flailings don’t seem to make much sense.

.  Also worthy of note:  the starling admission by Lieberman communications director Marion Steinfels that she doesn't even watch the powerful YouTube videos made by Lamont's supporters that have spread like wildfire through the internet and done so much damage to the Lieberman campaign.   Joe’s answer to the beating he’s taking from video bloggers?  Don’t watch them, and pretend they don’t exist.  


Now we know why he thinks things are going so swell in Iraq.

Jane Hamsher blogs at Photo by CTBlogger.