Venom Against 'Liebermonster' All Wrong

He hasn't changed, DC has; it's way too polarized
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 19, 2009 11:19 AM CST
Venom Against 'Liebermonster' All Wrong
Sen. Joseph Lieberman on Capitol Hill Thursday.   (AP Photo/Harry Hamburg)

The standard vitriol against Joe Lieberman goes something like this: He's angry over losing the Democratic primary in 2006 and now is taking it out on liberals by shifting to the right on health care reform. "The narrative is as satisfying as it is pervasive," writes Dana Milbank. "It's also wrong." Lieberman—or "Liebermonster," in the eyes of critics—hasn't changed. "He's the same old Joe who has been sticking it to Democrats on high-profile issues for two decades," writes Milbank in the Washington Post.

"What's changed is everybody else. In our increasingly tribal politics, both sides are more demanding of ideological purity than they were when Lieberman came to the Senate in 1988," adds Milbank. "The constant purging of heretics has left Congress ever more polarized. This, more than anything done by Lieberman or Ben Nelson or Olympia Snowe, is why the government can't get anything done." (More Joe Lieberman health care reform stories.)

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