Lieberman likely to back some Republicans in 2010 election
Senator Joe Lieberman, a former Democrat-turned-independent, is at it again — comforting Republicans and irritating Democrats.
This time Lieberman is doing it by saying, “I probably will support some Republican candidates” in next year’s congressional election — even though he’s still a member of the Senate Democratic Caucus.
“I’m going to call them as I see them,” he said in an interview with ABC News that the network posted on its web site on Friday.
Lieberman riled Democrats last year by campaigning for Republican presidential nominee John McCain. And he upset many of them again this week by saying he would help Republicans block their proposal to create a government-backed insurance program to compete with private insurers.
When it comes to elections, Lieberman said, he backs people on both sides of the political aisle who are more interested in getting things done rather than playing politics.
“There’s a hard core of partisan, passionate, hardcore Republicans,” he told ABC. “There’s a hard core of partisan Democrats on the other side.”
“And inbetween is the larger group, which is people who really want to see the right thing done, or want something good done for this country and them — and that means, sometimes, the better choice is somebody who’s not a Democrat,” Lieberman said.
Lieberman said in the hotly contested race in his home state of Connecticut, he backs incumbent Senate Democrat Chris Dodd.
Lieberman was the Democrats’ 2000 U.S. vice presidential nominee and won three terms to the Senate as a Democrat. But he narrowly won a fourth Senate term in 2006 as an independent after he lost the Democratic nomination to an anti-Iraq war challenger.
A number of Senate Democrats wanted to strip Lieberman of his chairmanship of the Homeland Security Committee for backing McCain’s White House bid. But with the support of Democratic President Barack Obama, Lieberman managed to keep it.
There was fear if he lost the chairmanship, he would become a Republican.
Photo credit: Reuters/Kevin Lamarque (Lieberman embraces Obama after president’s address to Congress Feb. 24)