Can you feel the Joementum? The New York Sun certainly can. In a fawning editorial today, the conservative paper all but endorsed Joe Lieberman as John McCain's running mate. While acknowledging that some hardcore conservatives might have a problem with the 66-year old Connecticut senator because he is an "independent Democrat," the Sun's editorial board seems convinced Lieberman's pros far exceed his cons. For one, the Sun pointed to Lieberman's unfailingly hawkish foreign policy beliefs. Lieberman has been a consistent supporter of President Bush's "war on terror." And he recently lauded the comments Bush made before the Israeli Knesset in which the president warned about the threat of terrorism sponsored by Iran.
The Sun staff also approved of Lieberman's recent criticism of Barack Obama for the latter's willingness to meet with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Il. In a speech he gave Sunday night at the neoconservative journal Commentary's annual dinner, Lieberman chastised Obama, saying that President Kennedy never sat down with Fidel Castro and President Reagan never met with Ayatollah Khomenei.
Far be it for us to point out that a man named Castro is still in charge of Cuba and that, at last check, Iran was not only still an Islamic republic, but also a burgeoning power in the Middle East -- the Sun obviously has different criteria in determining its choice for vice president than we do.
The piece concludes with this particularly incisive statement:
What any candidate, whether Mr. McCain's age or younger, needs in a vice president is someone not to balance the ticket but to fill in as president in case fate intervenes. Were Mr. Lieberman to take over from Senator McCain, the voters would have every confidence that, on the key issues, their vote for Mr. McCain would be redeemed by a committed hawk in the war on Islamist terror, a patriotic American who believes in supporting freedom and human rights around the world, a free-trader, an experienced, veteran senator who can appeal to centrists and has a record of working across party lines to get legislation passed in Washington.