Tuesday, August 01, 2006

One Week and Counting

LIEBERMAN-LAMONT IS going down to the wire. Why?

That's the big question isn't it? Pundits from both sides have been trying to explain (and predict) this race for the past few months. Neither side really knows how the race is going to end up, but rank-and-file Dems have been coming out in force for Lieberman in recent weeks. A couple of weeks ago Bill Clinton hit the campaign trail. This week, a who's-who among Senate Democrats took up the Lieberman cause. Shumer, Dodd, Levin, and others. My favorite was Ken Salazar (CO), who gave a stump speach calling Lieberman "a hero of mine and someone who has inspired me." Glowing words.

But there's a bigger issue at play in this race, and this is future road map for the Democratic party. Are Dems in Connecticut (and around the country) abandoning Democrats who they see as chasing a 'center' that has been moving to the right since 1980? Are Democrats so disgusted with the Bush presidency that they will sacrifice one of their most effective Senators for a 'further from Bush' candidate?

I'm sure it's not that quite that simple. EJ Dionne has some more insights in today's WaPo. Here's Dionne's summary:

As for the primary, the lesson already is clear. A Democratic Party that has been on the defense since the 1980s desperately wants to go on offense. Lamont understands that. If Lieberman is to survive this round, he needs to make clear between now and next Tuesday that he's gotten the message.

The only thing we know for sure is that this will all be decided next Tuesday. Isn't that the beauty of politics?


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