November 11th, 2008
02:23 PM ET
5 years ago

Obama: No grudges against Lieberman

Obama is not holding a grudge against Sen. Lieberman.
Obama is not holding a grudge against Sen. Lieberman.

(CNN) – Barack Obama won’t publicly weigh in on whether or not Sen. Joe Lieberman should keep his position as chairman of the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, the president-elect's transition office said.

According to Obama spokeswoman Stephanie Cutter, the president-elect doesn't “hold any grudges” against Lieberman and thinks the Connecticut lawmaker should remain a part of the Democratic caucus.

"We aren't going to referee decisions about who should or should not be a committee chair,” Cutter said. “President-elect Obama looks forward to working with anyone to move the country forward. We'd be happy to have Sen. Lieberman caucus with the Democrats. We don't hold any grudges."

Sources told CNN Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told Lieberman last week that he's considering revoking Lieberman's chairmanship on the powerful Homeland Security committee and instead giving him a chairmanship on another, less important, committee. Lieberman reportedly called that proposal "not acceptable."

The full Democratic caucus will likely vote on this issue when it reconvenes next Tuesday, a senior Democratic aide told CNN’s Dana Bash.

Lieberman, an independent, typically votes with the Democrats on a majority of issues, but was a fixture on the campaign trail for John McCain. Lieberman angered Democrats by attacking Obama throughout the campaign, most visibly in a primetime speech during the Republican National Convention when he called Obama inexperienced and said “eloquence is no substitute for a record.”

soundoff (202 Responses)
  1. Spencer/VA

    Spoken like a true president.

    November 11, 2008 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  2. Independent

    So in other words, Obama supporters believed in UNITY and BIPARTISANSHIP when it meant Republicans supporting Obama, but not with it means Democrats supporting McCain. Gotcha.

    November 11, 2008 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  3. mume

    He needs to be fired period, now he's trying to be nice after all he said in da campaign trail forget J Liebermann

    November 11, 2008 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  4. He threw his party under the bus!

    Lieberman should not retain his position, this is a man that insulted his party and then threw them under the bus.... Obama needs to start fresh and not have to counter someone's old views and that is not ready to move this country in a new direction.

    November 11, 2008 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  5. voter

    Traitor Joe should cacucus with the democrats. Keep your friends close, but your enemies closer.

    November 11, 2008 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  6. Joy

    I would like for all these bloggers here on cnn go to fox and blog against the naysayers there ...........they are so full of crap and need to be informed .............

    November 11, 2008 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  7. Arkansas Undertaker

    This is why I know that America chose the right man for the job. He is very Bi-partisan.

    He always takes the high ground. Now me, im a horse of a different color. I would kick Lieberman out on his collective A–!!!!!!!

    November 11, 2008 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  8. J.P.

    Hippies, what are you whining about? Lieberman may be among the dying breed of pro-defense Democrats, but in his heart of hearts, he is very much a tax and spend liberal. He votes like a conservative 5 percent of the time and votes like Bernie Sanders the other 95.

    Trust me, you've got enough patchouli votes to ensure we're all going to get saddled with New Deal 2.0... so again, what are you whining about?

    November 11, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  9. Noemi in Los Angeles

    I dont like Lieberman....

    November 11, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  10. Vic

    Senator Obama will do whats best for the country.
    He has the ability to put grudges aside (what many in Washington need to do) and to put the betterment of our country first.
    I still hold grudges against Lieberman, McCain, Palin, and a few others....they shamed themselves and our country.

    November 11, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  11. Yes to Obama

    Exactly!!!!!!!!...Reverse all Neo Con servative exceutive orders and give us something reasonable we can live with it.....

    November 11, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  12. Ratgurl

    Obama may not be holding a grudge against Lieberman, but the people of the U.S. sure hold one!

    Strip Lieberman of all his positions!

    November 11, 2008 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  13. Jeff

    Putting partisanship and "revenge" aside, if we take into account what Joe SAI during the campaign, it is CRYSTAL CLEAR that his views on homeland security are at odds with our new President. For this reason alone, he has no business chairing that committee.

    November 11, 2008 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  14. John

    ..........Obama doesnt shout...........am sure he will deal with him in 2 years time. Smart politics.

    November 11, 2008 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  15. Jack Jodell, Minneapolis, MN

    Obama has shown himself to be a truly great man in the best tradition of Lincoln. I would have been far less charitable. I hope the voters of Connecticut will see fit to depose of Lieberman in 2010!

    November 11, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  16. kayla

    I AGREE WITH PRES. ELECT OBAMA. REGARDING LIEBERMA HOWEVER, I WOULD BE VERY CAREFUL OF HIM. HE CANNOT BE TRUSTED. HE MAY BE AN ISIDER FOR THE GOPS'

    November 11, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  17. Aaron from ohio

    Senator Lieberman bet his political future and lost. His best hope lies in a McCain administration. Maybe he could be Chairman of Getting Coffee and Answering the Phone. He wanted to be VP and now he's nothing. Those ashes on the floor aren't from a victory cigar, they're the ashes of his career.

    November 11, 2008 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  18. hello

    wait till we decide about three senata race.
    if we win all then we need him for 60 vote if we don't than we can kick him from chairmanship.

    November 11, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  19. Jen

    So let me get this straight. You applaud Republicans who cross over support the other party. Yet, a Democrat does it and you complain and call him a traitor? Okay, if that's how it goes, then wouldn't that make Colin Powell and Chuck Hagel a traitor as well? (I don't think they are traitors, I'm just trying to prove a point). In case y'all didn't forget, this is America, and people can support whomever they want for President WITHOUT repercussions. That is one of the things that makes American great, and people seem to have forgotten that.

    November 11, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  20. JohnBoy

    YES WE CAN

    YES OBAMA WILL

    YES YOU WILL PAY

    YES THERE WILL BE CHANGE

    YES YOU MAY NOT LIKE THE CHANGE.

    YES YOU WILL PAY MORE THAN CHANGE

    YES WE CAN

    November 11, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  21. Dee

    Well NJ, there are over 50 million OBAMA supporters in the U.S...maybe you should leave the country..we'd hate for you to be unhappy in life!!!!!

    November 11, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  22. Borat

    Obama is to smart for these guys now he will have Liberman on pins and needles , plus we may need him for a 60 Seat Majority which would be buster -proof !!!! IF YOU GUYS HAVE NOT FIGURED IT OUT YET OBAMA WILL GO DOWN AS THE GREATEST POLITICIAN OF THE 21 CENTURY TAKE MY WORD !!! AND THE REASON WHY IS BECAUSE HE WILL DO WHATS RIGHT NOT WHAT YOU WANT !

    November 11, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  23. Kevin

    3strikes you are dumb!

    November 11, 2008 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  24. CT Mama for Obama

    Those of us in Connecticut are counting the days until we can hold ol' Joe accountable for his actions. Don't worry, Mr. President–we'll take care of him.

    November 11, 2008 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  25. Sarah

    The problem isn't that Lieberman voiced his opinion. The problem is that he promised he would support McCain, not attack Obama. He questioned Obama's patriotism and suggested he was a marxist, and broke that promise even more by campaigning for down ticket republicans as well. Yeah, he used freedom of speech, but there's no reason why the democrats should welcome him back with open arms. He IS a slime ball and a traitor, not to mention a complete moron. He can go talk crap and exercise the freedom of speech as a member of the republican caucus, if it comes to that.

    Btw, do you know who went and campaigned for this traitor back when he lost the democratic primary in Connecticut the last election? That's right, Barack Obama.

    November 11, 2008 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
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