November 6th, 2008
12:25 PM ET
5 years ago

Lieberman meeting with Reid this afternoon

Lieberman was a strong supporter of John McCain’s presidential bid.
Lieberman was a strong supporter of John McCain’s presidential bid.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Sen. Joe Lieberman, the Democrat turned independent who backed Republican Sen. John McCain for president, will meet at 1 p.m. Thursday with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to discuss Lieberman’s future with the Democratic caucus, according to two congressional sources familiar with the matter.

At stake is Lieberman’s chairmanship of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and possibly his other committee assignments. Reid could also ask Lieberman to leave the Democratic caucus altogether.

Lieberman’s support of McCain – and harshly critical words of President-elect Barack Obama during the campaign - angered many Senate Democrats but Reid was reluctant to act against the Connecticut senator earlier because Democratic control of the Senate relied on Lieberman’s decision to organize with the Democrats.

But after picking up multiple Democratic seats on Election Day, Reid is politically empowered to strip Lieberman of the coveted chairmanship if he chooses. The full Democratic caucus would have to approve any action Reid takes when it meets on Capitol Hill in two weeks.

Democratic leadership aides would not say what Reid will do at the highly-anticipated meeting which is expected to take place in Reid’s leadership suite off the Senate floor. Reid has not been shy in the past about expressing his frustration with Lieberman who just eight years ago was the Democrats’ nominee for Vice President. But he’s also repeatedly said he values Lieberman’s membership in the caucus because on most issues Lieberman votes with the Democrats.


Filed under: Joe Lieberman
soundoff (322 Responses)
  1. Jaye

    BREAKING NEWS – The state of North Carolina votes are tabulated and goes to President-elect Obama!!!
    I am thrilled beyond belief – NC is my state!!!!!

    November 6, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  2. Dan from Ohio

    As a registered Democrat and diehard liberal, I say forgive Joe! Times are tough, and we can't afford to hold grudges when there is work to be done.

    November 6, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  3. InformMe

    CNN:
    As many people have already noted, Lieberman was not the VP candidate four years ago!

    Please change this information.

    November 6, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  4. Christopher W. Mannoia

    Harry Reid needs to reign this guy in; he has done nothing but play "both sides against the middle" for too-long; he needs to either support President Obama, or be quiet until his term is complete and go back to CT.

    November 6, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  5. W Spivey Merritt Island, FL

    Send his butt packing. He is a wolf in sheep's clothing. He should be careful around Helicopters though. Sarah might be hunting.

    November 6, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  6. Ted:Canada

    This is an EASY ONE!!

    Lieberman sided with McCain because he felt that McCain was more likely to strike if Israel was attached.

    His primary interest was to protect Israel.

    We could argue either way if this was right or wrong and one could legitimately argue which country was Lieberman referring to when he supported the notion of "Country First".

    If he was smart he should have stayed neutral and tried to influence after the new government was in – OH well.

    Here is my PERDICTION !!!!

    Loses – Chairmanship
    Allowed to stay on the committee as an independent

    Good compromise!

    November 6, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  7. JL

    YES he sooooooooooooooooooooooo needs the boot! And do it TODAY please.

    November 6, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  8. margie

    It's time to go Joe!! Bye Bye!!

    November 6, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  9. Jean

    It is time for Joe to GOOOOOOOOOOO!
    Working together is very important. But when there is no trust it cannot be done.
    The man did his last Flip Flop and was caught and reeled in and is gasping his last breath on the side of the fishing boat.
    Intengrity is very important and I feel McCain had quite a bit.
    McCain refused to support many Rove actions. The party did the actions not McCain. JOE DID NOT and needs to go away.

    November 6, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  10. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Who knows what Lieberman was thinking about when he attacked Obama or if he was thinking at all. I know it would be hard for Senator Harry Reid to give Lieberman the boot, they've been friends for a long time but it might be best. Just think about Lieberman and McCain conspiring in the Senate to overthrow the Government because they are too old and senile to do anything else but create trouble. McCain and Lieberman both need to be put out to pasture, they are two old grumpy men with a past and no vision for the future, just war.

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  11. Tex,

    Lieberman should switch his affinity to the GOP. He has always turns against the Democratic Party. While President CLinton was in Ireland trying to broker peace, Lieberman was busy at senate floor attacking the President for moral flaws regarding Monica Lewinsky.In this very historical time for the Party and our country and to what means to the Party's most loyal supporters- African Americans,Lieberman continues to be disrespectable and disloyal to the party.He needs to go

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  12. robert

    what of joe the plumber, joe lihermann, and joe biden in true american sit down and enjoy a meal together and laugh without rancour. take life easy folks

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  13. dickelocker, Ft. Lauderdale

    Lieberman was Dem's VP candidate in 2000, & nearly won.
    Now he's an Independent. He won without Dem support.
    Last session he was needed for Dem's to control Senate.
    Now he's not needed for control.

    Further, rather than neutrality or bipartisanship, he chose McCain.
    This naturally caused great resentment among loyal blue Dems.
    The Dem. Senate is likely to strip him of his major Chair, Homeland Security, but probably not his position on other committees.
    Some price will be demanded as just dessert, if the above partisan diatribes are any example of Senate feelings. However, Senators are more civil in public discourse than many CNN bloggers.

    To resolve this, how about Obama appointing him to the Cabinet?
    This would open his Senate seat to a "real" or "trusty" Dem Senator.
    And provide some bipartisanship Obama is looking for.
    rel

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  14. jeff

    Lieberman is a trator to his party and should be sent packing. This type of thing is all about politics not about the Democrats' "true colors" showing through.

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  15. Florida Woman

    Keeping Lieberman in the Democratic Caucus is enough. He certainly doesn't deserve a chairmanship of anything.

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  16. Rodger

    Joe Lieberman has been a very good Senator on social issues, other than his stance on Iraq and his long friendship with John McCain, he will continue to be a good Senator. The John McCain he supported has changed radically politically and his judgement in supporting him, and his statements of support and questions about Barack Obama, should not result in his being removed from the Democratic caucus. It's time for unity and not for vindictiveness!

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  17. Sneaky Libermann

    We, the real Democrats want and urge Reid to have Libermann's Senate seat move to the Red Zone. Libermann, before and during the primaries and main election has been a "Republican in disguise". He sided with the Republicans to the extent of openly criticising former Democratic colleagues. Libermann cannot have it both ways. MOVE HIM!

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  18. Mohamed from Virgina

    Liebermann never put COUNTRY FIRST it was always ISRAEL first.

    November 6, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  19. Linda from Prescott AZ

    Throw the bum out!
    He can caucus with the republicans.

    November 6, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  20. The Truth

    This guy is worthless now!

    Go home Joe!

    November 6, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  21. yvonne

    Well, I guess that is why Joe Lieberman is an Independent, which is what I feel I am.

    No I did not like the idea that he supported McCain and said the things he said about President Elect Obama, but that was and is every American's right. He ultimately has to answer for his own actions.

    I just hope the Democrats can continue to take the high road and not burn too many bridges before we continue on with the change that we so desperately need!

    November 6, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  22. Tim

    Listen to dopey David from Illinois' version of bipartinsanship "I too believe Lieberman should get the boot. It doesn't mean that the Dems don't believe in bipartisanship. Lieberman is still free to vote with the Dems or not. It's his choice. "

    A rather typical liberal thought about bi-partisanship. See, we are bipartisan, you are free to vote with us whenever you want. We won't hold you voting with us against you.

    Change you can believe in!

    November 6, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  23. John

    Dear Eva.
    I can tell what a bipartisan moderate John McCain was just by his thousands of attack ads and robo calls calling democrats socialists, terrorists and not "real Americans". I don't believe Republicans should now be so concerned about bipartisanship-they haven't shown any for the past 30 years.

    November 6, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  24. Jackson

    Arrivederci, Tessio.

    November 6, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  25. Yoursotruly

    Sure, Joe is a traitor and a fool but remember the old adage, "Keep your friends close and your enemies closer." It does no good to alienate anyone and make Lierberman into a posterchild of Democratic pique. Joe will follow the Obama line carefully from now on and if he doesn't that will be the time to punish him. Of course, he will be removed from his committee chairmanship and any other leadership position, he's not a Democrat anymore and the leadership roles are for the Party in power.

    November 6, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
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