The vote among Democratic senators to keep Senator Joe Liebeman as chairman of the Homeland Security Committee was overwhelming–42 to 13. A Democratic advisor close to the proceedings described to me what occurred. He said there were “very strong presentations by Reid, Dodd, Bayh, and Salazar,” and the “only two negative voices were Leahy and Sanders.” Lieberman, according to this source, described his own experience registering African American voters in Mississippi in 1963, and said that, although he had supported John McCain, President-elect Obama’s victory was “a moving moment for him.” He also acknowledged that his colleagues were upset, but he offered no specific apologies for particular statements made during the campaign. He admitted that he could have said some things differently, but added that other things he’s been accused of saying are either distortions or untruths.
Lieberman, who has continued to fight for the nearly extinct “Scoop Jackson” wing of the Democratic Party, is obviously pleased by the result. For conservatives, it is on balance a very good thing to have him as chairman of a key committee. And, as noted earlier, any day in which the Left is threatening rebellion is not a bad one for the Republican Party.