Wednesday, August 09, 2006

CT - How Lieberman Really Lost, How He Might Win in November, & Ned Lamont's Willie Horton Moment ...

Everybody else is talking about the anti-war & anti-Bush vote & the liberal blogs bringing Lieberman down.

We'd like to think it was that critical 11% Black swing vote that put the nail on the coffin. Few talked about that.

But, Lieberman's (somewhat arrogant) run as an Independent in a 3-way race (regardless of staunch, unfied opposition from the Democrats) may actually work. Especially if photos of an unprepared Ned Lamont standing with Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rev. Al Sharpton & Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) are used in such a way to alienate Connecticuts moderate and mostly independent voters. That image could turn out to be a fatal political mistake for Lamont. We'll see - it could be a very interesting test for Jackson, Sharpton and others who believe they are still very relevant in the political mainstream. This could turn into Lamont's very own Willie Horton moment ...

Lieberman could very well split that vote decisively to his favor. White moderates, independents and Republicans, terrified of a Senator controlled by "demagogues" and "liberal activists" from afar (and Black ones, too, oh my!) will feel comfortable giving their vote to the 7-term Senator. At that point, Lieberman will owe nothing to Democrats and he most certainly will owe nothing to the larger Black political community that campaigned tirelessly against him in Connecticut and beyond (unless Congressman John Lewis (D-GA) can repair that already cracked bridge). And, what does this say about the already fractured Black/Jewish relationship? African American politicos were already put off by Gore's veep choice back in 2000 because of his ambivalence on affirmative action.

Lieberman only lost by 4 percentage points in the primary - which means Lamont didn't get a mandate. Prediction: Lieberman wins with Independent, Republican and Conservative support. The real question is whether he will change parties after November. Prediction: yes.