Eric Alterman’s Wacky Lieberman Theory

Over at Eschaton, Atrios quotes Eric Alterman, who has a bizarre theory about what will happen if Lieberman wins:

“Here’s my prediction: If Lieberman wins the election, he will not switch to the Republicans, as some fear. But he will do the functional equivalent, which is accept Bush’s appointment to replace Rumsfeld as Secretary of Defense, resign his seat and allow the Republican governor of Connecticut to appoint a Republican in his stead. That is the implicit deal between the Lieberman camp and Rove, Cheney, Bush etc and the reason, that alone, in the entire country, this is the only race where this most partisan of political operations, refuses to support the Republican in the race. Bush, Rove and Cheney do not make political decisions on the basis of what they think is good for the country. They care only about their party and themselves. If Lieberman supporters are genuinely supporting him as a Democrat, is it not enough for him to pledge to vote with the party in the Senate. He must pledge that, under no circumstances, will he accept an appointment from Bush or resign his seat under any circumstances, so long as a Republican occupies the state House.”

You have wonder if Alterman is actually dumb enough to believe this or whether he’s just trying to come up with a scare scenario to try to drive more Democratic voters in Connecticut to Lamont.

After all, it’s not exactly tough to figure out why Republicans would support Lieberman even if Joe isn’t going to sign on as Secretary of Defense or caucus with the GOP.

I mean, as we speak, millions of dollars are pouring into Connecticut, on both sides of the race, that could have very well gone to other Democratic candidates. Turning the Connecticut Senate race into a Democratic money pit could help the GOP pull out another couple of close races in the Senate this November.

Plus, just imagine what a black eye it will be for the netroots crowd and the anti-war movement if Lieberman wins as an independent. If Ned Lamont is supposed to be the primo candidate of the “people powered movement,” an “anti-war candidate” who will prove that America has shifted on Iraq, then turning his moment in the sun, after winning the primary, into a Pyrrhic victory is certainly to the advantage of the GOP and Americans who are serious about our national security.

Maybe things would be different if the Republican candidate, Alan Schlesinger, wasn’t in single digits and dropping, but at the moment, the only real choice the voters in Connecticut have is between Joe Lieberman and Ned Lamont. Since that’s the case, Lieberman is easily the better choice for conservative voters, even though he’s not a conservative.

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