A jolt for Joe-mentum?

Former Gov. and Sen. Lowell Weicker says he may run against Lieberman to challenge him on the war.

By Tim Grieve
Published December 6, 2005 2:17PM (EST)

In 1998, Joe Lieberman defeated Lowell Weicker in his bid for reelection as a U.S. senator from Connecticut. Weicker was a Republican then, and Lieberman was a Democrat. Weicker went on to become an independent, and Lieberman went on to become, well, what? He's still a Democrat on paper, but you could call him a Bush-lite if the "lite" part weren't so hard to see.

What goes around comes around.

Weicker tells the New York Times today that he'll consider running against Lieberman in 2006 if no one else does. "When you've become the president's best friend on the war in Iraq, you should not be in office, especially if you're in the opposing party," Weicker says. "I'm going to do everything I can to see that Joe Lieberman does not get a free pass."

Writing in the Wall Street Journal last month, Lieberman was effusive about the "real progress" being made in Iraq and said he was "disappointed" in both Democrats and Republicans who had expressed criticism of the president. Even before the president unveiled his "National Strategy for Victory in Iraq," Lieberman proclaimed that the United States had a "good plan" in place for winning there.

When the Times asked Weicker about his own strategy for Iraq, he said: "Out! We'd get out of Iraq. I'm not going to tell you it should be on Feb. 16 or something, but six months to a year, we're out. Otherwise you get all these mealy statements."

Speaking of which, Nancy DiNardo, the chairwoman of Connecticut's Democratic State Central Committee, tells the Times that while some Democratic voters "have a different opinion than Joe on the war," Lieberman "has done a number of great things for this state and this country and he certainly deserves to be re-elected."

Tim Grieve

Tim Grieve is a senior writer and the author of Salon's War Room blog.

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