Top Ten Horrible Things done to Us by Outgoing Sen. Joe Lieberman

Senator Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) announced Tuesday that he would not seek reelection in 2012, and progressive Americans breathed a sigh of collective relief. It is worth reviewing the most horrible things Lieberman has done to us since he has been in office.

10. Undermined Jeffersonian ideals by joining with George W. Bush to throw government money to religious organizations.

Lieberman & Bush

Lieberman & Bush

9. Revived, with Lynn Cheney, McCarthyite techniques in order to harass and intimidate university professors who dared attempt to explain the historical and political context for the rise of al-Qaeda and its attacks on the United States. He even put out a blacklist of 40 university professors and administrators, including the President of Wesleyan University.

Lieberman and Cheney

8. In 2004, revived the war-mongering, militarizing, anti-progressive ‘Committee on the Present Danger‘ to fight the anti-war movement and keep the US in Iraq, as well as to promote war on Iran.

7. Deprived Democrats of the votes to pass a single-payer option universal health care law, acting as client of big Medicine instead of looking out for ordinary people.

6. Called Israeli’s pre-planned aussault on defenseless little Gaza in 2008-2009 “self defense” on Israel’s part.

Joe Lieberman & Avigdor Lieberman

Joe Lieberman & Avigdor Lieberman

5. Intimidated Amazon into ceasing to allow Wikileaks to be hosted on its servers, even though Wikileaks is not proven to have done anything illegal. Urged that Wikileaks founder Julian Assange be prosecuted for espionage.

4. Urged prosecution of the New York Times for publishing US State Department cables given to the NYT by Wikileaks, despite the precedent of the Pentagon Papers.

3. Joined, in 2002, the Neoconservative ‘Committee for the Liberation of Iraq’ to get up a war of aggression on that country on false pretenses. His war killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and over 4000 US troops, threw Iraq into long-term instability, and made Iran a regional superpower.

chalabi lieberman

Ahmad Chalabi and Joe Lieberman

2. Repeatedly called from 2006 for aggression against Iran by the US Air Force.

1. Defected to the Republicans in 2008 and tried to make Sarah Palin Vice President of the United States, saying ‘everyone should listen to Sarah Palin.’

Joe Lieberman & Sarah Palin

Joe Lieberman & Sarah Palin

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40 Responses

  1. And not a moment too soon. Sen. Lieberman has done more damage to more people and to his country for longer than perhaps any sitting US Senator.

    • Lieberman was apparently good enough to run with Al Gore. Kennedy called Lieberman ‘a rock solid partner’. Gore had nothing but accolades for the man. Lieberman is a John Kennedy Democrat. Remember all of the Democrats that said that Lieberman had the MOST integrity. But when a person becomes a self thinker and not follow the party line, you get blogs like this. I’m no fan of Lieberman, but he at least has the guts most other liberals lack. More name calling please. It’s what you do when you don’t have access to the arena of ideas. Liberals are so typical.

      • Sorry, Mr. Weatherby, but in the last 10 years Joe Lieberman’s main motivation appeared to be spiting the people he saw as “betraying” him and representing the interests of the insurance industry in CT rather than his constituents. It’s why he lost a primary battle six years ago. His whining, meandering and fact-challenged retirement announcement was typical of his self-aggrandizing, fact denying view of the world since the 2000 election.

        A “self thinker” would not have said “America should listen to Sarah Palin” – which, fortunately, it did and rejected her and John McCain (the man who catapaulted her from the obscurity she so richly deserved). A “self thinker” would not have been a loud supporter of George W. Bush’s war built on deliberate lies. A “self thinker” would not have used all of the insurance industry’s talking points in objecting to either “Medicare for all,” something he once supported, or a public option. A “self thinker” would have understood that friends will tell their friends that what they are doing is wrong, immoral and illegal – which the US has never done with respect to Israel.

        Joe Lieberman doesn’t have “guts,” as you called it; he is a petty, small-minded man, angry man who betrayed his own beliefs.

        • A self thinker would not have replied as you replied. A truly self thinker would not have brought up the false claim about the the Iraq was being a bunch of lies. Obviously, you don’t understand the truth. Most liberals don’t. These same lies were spouted first by people like, Al Gore, Kerry, Clinton (both husband and wife) and most other liberals.

          There wasn’t much difference between McCain or Obama except for the Wilson-esque, anti colonialism that Obama hangs on to. As I said, I am no fan of Lieberman. But it was liberals who still complemented Lieberman through 2005. And even Obama himself said good things about Joe in 2008.

      • Since Sr. Weatherbee has already closed the debate, let me be the first to call him what he is – a republican. Lieberman was despised by each and every “typical liberal” and rightly so – he’s a fraud.

  2. Awww…..that last picture is so precious….two of the nation’s most honored Vice-Presidential candidates, and had John McCain or Al Gore been elected, each of them would have been a hair’s breadth from the Presidency. I can’t see any difference between Lieberman trying to help Sarah Palin become Vice-President, or his own efforts to become Vice-President. There’s a difference between the Democratic and Republican parties, and it can be measured by the distance between Lieberman and Palin in the photo.

    • It riles them to believe that you perceive
      the web they weave. Keep on thinking free.

  3. Hell hath no fury like a pissed off historian.

    Thanks for the trip down memory lane.

  4. Joe is one of the lowest creatures on my list. He lacks human decency– every thing is play for political advantage.
    Smarmy is his best description. He is the perfect associate for Sarah Palin, Bush and Cheney.

  5. His advocacy of an unnecessary, illegal, misbegotten war that resulted in the premature deaths of 100,000’s of innocent Iraqis is the biggest offense, in my view.

  6. Thanks.

    Voted for the Iraq war, Mukasey, and has pushed for and sponsored lopsided legislation supporting Israel no matter what they do for years.

    Think you would be interested in this.
    Pickering, Hills, Sullivan, Beinart, Dobbins, More Ask Obama Administration to Support UN Resolution Condemning Illegal Israeli Settlements
    link to

    Is this more too little too late?


    Last night Keith Olbermann had David “axis of evil” Frum on to discuss inflammatory and hate filled rhetoric. Talk about absurd. We all know Frum was one of the Iraq war pushers. And has repeated inflammatory and unsubstantiated claims about Iran.

    Keith really thinks his listeners have short and muddied memories. Olbermann supporting David “axis of evil” Frum’s effort to reconstruct his stance on the run up to the illegal and immoral invasion of Iraq. This man has blood all over this hands and is well practiced in creating dangerous “axis of evil” sound bites.

    What is up with Olbermann? Is David “axis of evil” Frum really the appropriate person to be talking about hateful, inflammatory and inaccurate rhetoric? Is Olbermann really unable to find a more appropriate person to talk about this important topic?
    “Public weighs in on Tucson shootings”

    David “axis of evil” Frum
    link to

  7. I always thought Joe Lieberman looked a lot like the Palpatine character from the original Star Wars, both politically and physically. I believe Lieberman went to the “dark side” after 9/11. The mainstream press seems to never criticize Lieberman, so thank you Professor Cole for exposing the man for what he really is.

    • I think Lieberman looks, and sounds, like the cartoon character Droopy, and should be taken about as seriously.

      Lieberman’s support of Palin was intolerable.

  8. Don’t get so down on Joe LIEberman! He has just been doing his job as the senator from AIPAC.

  9. To speak plainly – nothing tops lack of actions to stop runaway global overheat.. Some might say wasn’t it a good thing for the Lieberman Kerry Energy Bill to have been put forward and to that I would direct readers to read an article dated May 13th of 2010 entitled The American Power Act Kerry’s and Lieberman’s Climate Junk Shot by Erich Pica. In that article he explains how the bill was launched after Lindsey Graham dropped support. How it was crafted in such a way as to gain support of nuclear, coal and oil companies. How it endorsed use of nuclear, coal and natural gas in its definition of clean energy.. So where are efforts today

  10. I’ve seen 100 of these lists about Senator “Droopy Dog” Joe Lieberman as Jon Stewart calls him. Whats more I’ve seen them coming from every ideological stripe as well as non-ideological. I have another one: #11. He likes Fox & Friends and can appear there as both a Liberal AND a Conservative. Lieberman is a complete Pollyanna creep. I just pray Droopy Joe doesn’t find a party he hasn’t led to ruin again before he’s finally forced out of DC power circles. He’s been gone before and came back fighting his critics again like the endless Iraq war. &_&

  11. #11. (#1 in my book):

    Tossing in the towel during the 2000 Florida recount. The bastardo.

  12. Reportedly Lieberman was Obama’s “Rabbi” in the Senate and Obama supported him when he ran for reelection in 2006 as an independent against a progressive Democratic candidate,

    This was an early warning that Obama’s campaign slogan “change you can believe in ” was nothing more than a clever scheme to fool the electorate into viewing him as a progressive candidate instead of the banking, big business, and Zionist shill that he always was.

  13. Great list, but I have a problem with #7.

    “7. Deprived Democrats of the votes to pass a single-payer option universal health care law, acting as client of big Medicine instead of looking out for ordinary people.”

    The “Public Option” is not “Single Payer”. Was this a typo?

    Your link quotes Lieberman as blocking the “Public Option”. There is absolutely no mention of “Single Payer”.

    “Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) said Tuesday that he would support a Republican filibuster of a health care bill that includes a public option.”

    “The “opt-out public option” is perceived as a compromise by liberals.” (The compromise being that they would NOT get “Single Payer”).

    So not only is this not about “Single Payer”, but it is actually about overcoming a 60 vote threshold due to the filibuster.

    It is, of course, pure fantasy to claim 60 votes are the only way to pass a bill.

    “(The “nuclear option”) allows a simple majority to override the rules of the Senate and end a filibuster or other delaying tactic. In contrast, the cloture rule requires a supermajority of 60 votes (out of 100) to end a filibuster.”
    link to

    In 1917, the Senate rules were changed to allow cloture in the first place, they can be changed again. There is no sanctity to the filibuster. The House, for example, does not allow “pirating” debate.

    In fact, Bernie Sanders claimed that Democrats had the 50 votes needed for the “Public Option”.

    “Sanders said he thinks Democrats have 50 votes in the Senate to pass a bill “certainly to include a public option.”

    link to

    So as far as Lieberman being the one responsible for blocking “single payer”… let’s just say, he had plenty of help.

    “I have not said I am a single payer supporter.” – Barack Obama, 8/11/09

    link to

    link to

  14. what a photo gallery.

    If you know any of the doings of those people, really, no words are necessary.

  15. I disagree with #7…he wasn’t actually a “client” of Big Medicine; rather, he was an “employee” of Big Medicine…after all they bought…I mean PAID him, didn’t they?

    Oh, and as far as pop culture characters For whom he could be mistaken, I submit to you Willy, from the 80s/90s TV show Alf (he REALLY sounds like Willy!!).

  16. The genius of the Israel lobby is that it found a way to become a stakeholder in both our parties at the same time; by relying on the unthinking support of the liberal Jewish base in the Democratic Party, while turning Israel into a warmongering right-wing theocracy that fired up our own Christian Right with a “feasible” model for America’s future that it used to take over the GOP. Lieberman the stealth reactionary was one of the coordinators, calibrating how far he could drag his co-religionists with him into bed with a GOP they despised.

    • SUPER390…talk about hitting the nail on the head! Very well said, I appreciate it.


  17. Holy Joe has only one guiding principle at this point: his own ego. When progressives dissed him by selecting another nominee for the Senate, he got a lengthy, nasty revenge on them; and when the GOP cannily feted him at every turn, he responded with endorsements galore. The only amazing thing in all this was the way the supine Dems fell over themselves kowtowing to him ever since. Granted, he did vote Dem on my standard procedural motions, but he’s only fostered the same image Obama has that the Dems are the party of privilege and power. A truly miraculous transformation in branding in only 2 years, and Holy Joe’s at least a bit responsible for it.

  18. Lieberman was the ultimate opportunist who would do anything to ingratiate himself with those in power. Using fake, Orthodox piety to insinuate himself onto Gore’s ticket at a time when Gore felt tainted by Clinton’s depravity was stomach-churning.

  19. Wingbat’s comment is correct: No. 7 is misleadng, because it suggests Democrats had intended to introduce a bill for single-payer national health care (also called Medicare For All) until Lieberman scuttled it.

    In reality, single-payer was declared “off the table” early on by Senate Finance Committee chair Max Baucus (D-Mont.), who led the health care reform panels. President Obama, despite earlier statements acknowledging that single-payer would be the best plan, said in the White House that he would not push for single-payer.

    Obamacare, of course, doesn’t come close to universal coverage. It’s a sellout to the health insurance cartel, Big Pharma, & other powerful corporate lobbies that dumped lots of money into Democratic campaign warchests in the 2008 election cycle (see contribution records kept by the Center for Responsive Politics, The mandates, meant to placate insurance firms unhappy about the very modest reforms in Obamacare, were originally a Republican proposal from the 1990s. Dems (I think Hillary Clinton was the first) coopted the mandate idea after 2000.

    The real killer of the public option was Obama himself, in early behind-the-scenes negotiations with insurance industry lobbyists. The public option was never really an option. Dem leaders in Congress maintained the pretense for a while that the public option was under consideration, to keep the party faithful behind Obamacare.

    Single-payer advocates were banned from the health care reform panels, although later on Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) was allowed in meetings after some vociferous protests by Dr. Margaret Flowers from Physicians for a National Health Program ( & others in the audience during the panels. Some progressive Dems like Conyers & Kucinich sharply criticized Obamacare and favored single-payer, although they caved in and voted for Obamacare in the end. The Green Party continues to support and promote single-payer (

    The health care reform debate was rigged from the beginning. Whether Obamacare was passed in Congress or the GOP succeeded in blocking it, the real winners would be the health insurance companies and the losers would be the rest of us, especially the millions of Americans without coverage or with inadequate coverage and those facing financial ruin over medical costs.

    Joe Lieberman was (is) very much a part of this charade. He’s one the best examples of the US’s descent into state capitalism, in which elected government’s chief purpose is to serve the demands of elite & powerful corporate oligarchies rather the needs of the people. What we need in this country is a voters’ revolt against the two corporate-money parties: see link to

  20. I have long felt that Gore lost the 2000 election. because Lieberman was on the ticket.

    I, for one, voted for Nader back then because I knew Lieberman was a fanatic Zionist warmonger and did not want him a heartbeat away from the Presidency. I would have voted for a Gore if he had a halfway decent running mate. If Nader had not run I would have abstained from voting although Bush had not yet come out as an equally fanatic warmonger.

    Undoubtedly Lieberman also cost the ticket the “anti-semitic” vote.

    Gore picking Lieberman for a running mate was perhaps the dumbest move of his political career INHO.

  21. Wow, this list is some thin gruel. What about his capitulation to Cheney in the 1999 VP debate? Compare his demeanor during that ‘exchange’ with his aggressiveness toward Ned Lamont in the Senate primary, and you’ll see that he was likely throwing the whole thing.

    And, more importantly, don’t forget Joe’s denunciation of Bill Clinton on the floor of the Senate in September 1998. Not only was this just before the mid-terms, but without that speech the GOP would have had a much harder time finding the ‘bipartisan’ cover it needed to carry the toxic Presidential impeachment saga forward fro.

  22. Here’s something nefarious Lieberman did which you missed.

    In 2006 when he was campaigning, Lieberman promised that he’d spearhead an investigation into what happened during Katrina and the Federal Flood.

    Then, comfortably in office and as head of the Homeland Security Committee, Lieberman said there would be no such investigation. He said in effect, “Move along–there’s nothing to see here.”

    So–not only did he deceive the good people of Connecticut into thinking there would be an investigation, he betrayed the people of New Orleans who deserve answers regarding what happened.

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