December 14th, 2009
01:24 PM ET
4 years ago

Lieberman a major problem for Senate Democrats on health care


Sen. Joe Lieberman has emerged as the main obstacle to Senate Majority Leader Reid's efforts to get a health care bill through the Senate before Christmas, if ever. (Photo Credit: Getty Images/File)

Washington (CNN) - A few weeks ago, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said colleague Joe Lieberman was the least of his problems in passing a health care bill.

Today, Lieberman has emerged as the main obstacle to Reid's efforts to get a health care bill through the Senate before Christmas, if ever.

An independent from Connecticut who sits with the Democratic caucus, Lieberman ratcheted up his public opposition to the bill Sunday. On the CBS program "Face the Nation," Lieberman said he would join a Republican filibuster if the bill contained either a government-run public health insurance option or a proposed alternative to the controversial provision - expanding Medicare to people as young as 55.

Lieberman also called for eliminating a provision to provide long-term home health care to the disabled while adding more cost containment measures to the $848 billion Democratic bill.

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Filed under: Democrats • Health care • Joe Lieberman • Senate
soundoff (79 Responses)
  1. Not In My World

    Liebermann is not the problem. The MAJORITY of citizens do not want this massive spending and welfare healthcare bill.

    It is the other 59 Senators (mostly Democrats) who will soon be jobless.

    December 14, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  2. Jane/Seattle

    This is one self-serving PIG! Why the Democrats keep him is the revealing FACT!

    December 14, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  3. Eddie

    Three cheers for Joe! Hey, I am hoping for a 2012 Palin/Lieberman Ticket........Now wouldn't that drive you Liberals nuts! (even nuttier than you already are)

    December 14, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  4. Mark

    First of all medicare is going bankrupt so the liberal idea is to expand it? Get a clue liberals...

    December 14, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  5. Steve

    How much are they paying you, Joe?

    December 14, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  6. bob in LA

    Please live in our shoes before you dismiss reform. At 55 I could not get health insurance because of pre-exisiting conditions. When i did finally find a plan it was 900.00 per month witha 30% co-pay and so many limitations that it was basically useless unless i had a major illness.
    There are too many of of "average people" out here that NEED thsi bill.
    Think long and hard before say no because of a provisions you don't like. Offer an alternative ,but VOTE YES.

    December 14, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  7. Phil

    Good for Lieberman. At least one person has some common sense. Don't you just love how the Democrats go cannibalistic when someone on their side of the aisle goes against the grain.

    December 14, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  8. Michael M, Phoenix AZ

    Lieberman has been a problem for the Democratic Party ever since he was VP candidate in 2004! He also acts and talks like a wimp.

    December 14, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  9. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    It is beginning to look (for some it has been a while) that Lieberman has been taking his orders from the Republicans in the Senate. I can't figure out how Lieberman justifies some of what he is doing. He wants it to move on, but he seemingly rejects many of the options that Democrats offer. It does sound like a Republican to me.

    December 14, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  10. Enough

    A problem for Democrats and their horrible health care bill...........but an asset to the American people, whom the majority do NOT want this lousy bill.

    Go Joe! We support you!

    December 14, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  11. Chanel

    He makes me sick! He was completely for a medicare buy in a few years ago. Who is paying this man to block health reform?!? It's obvious now that he will not be re-elected, but if he blocks health care, it will be too late. People need to put as much pressure as possible on him. This is just not right. Go through the people who have donated to his campaign and expose him!

    December 14, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  12. Jeff Spangler, Arlington, VA

    It's easy to hate this whiny little turncoat weasel, but harder to dismiss the arguments he makes about a "stealth" bill which does little to "bend the cost curve" and much to add costs and deficits which neither the CBO nor the CMMS will honestly estimate. Maybe starting over or going more slowly next Session isn't all that bad an idea.

    December 14, 2009 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  13. Hugo

    Unbeliveable the hatred toward this man from the left. Thanks Joe for not allowing the liberal ideologs to overrun us with this crap of a Bill. All Americans, Republicans and Democrats alike know we need healthcare reform. I believe most of America wants the common sense approach to reduce costs and improve care while not breaking the bank any further. I do not believe America wants more mismanaged bureaucracy laden with $71,000.00 dollar a year government employees to dictate where, how and who you go see for health services. Expand insurance pools, Cut the frivolous lawsuits with caps, end the anti-trust exemptions and create some competition between insurers. If you see the loopholes, close the gaps and supplement with tax dollars where you get the biggest bang for our dollar. Now would that be too much to ask?

    December 14, 2009 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  14. GI Joe

    He's been a major pain for years. I hope Conncticut sees fit to get rid of the Benedict Arnold in 2012.

    December 14, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  15. Susan in Arkansas

    Senator Lieberman needs to be ousted from his Senate Committee Chairmanship. He is a Republican in an Independent's clothing. His comments about overburdening Medicare are premature. He should wait to hear the verdict from the Congressional Budget Office before he passes judgement. Also, has he even considered the influx of cash to Medicare from the 55 to 64 group paying premiums, who are, by large, a healthier group than the 65 and up?

    December 14, 2009 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  16. Healthcare bill stinks

    Ignore the lies that Pelosi and Obama are telling you, the healthcare bill won't improve healthcare in America. Not only that, but it is unsustainable (10 years of taxing pays for 5 years of healthcare–starting AFTER the 2012 election).

    Over 80% of ALL Americans approve of their healthcare. Yes, it isn't perfect, but doesn't need to be Obamanized and replaced. We can fix small areas to bring costs down.

    Note: The Obama/Pelosi/Reid plan only has 35% support and therefore shouldn't even be on the table.

    (Thanks Lieberman for not giving in. Unfortunately, the looney lefties are now going to try to discredit, slander and attack him).

    December 14, 2009 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  17. Dwayne

    Senator Lieberman really fooled people in Connecticut. Now let's recall him.

    December 14, 2009 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  18. Chuck in CSG

    You go Joe~!

    December 14, 2009 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  19. Tree

    If the two so called "Republican" senators from Maine get a pass for how they always vote on the Democrats side then Lieberman should get a pass for doing the same. He at least labels himself as an Independent.

    December 14, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  20. pattyo

    Joe Lieberman is a disgrace to this country. He should be removed from membership in any committe he is a member of and I would hope be voted out of office when the next election comes around. We have many self-serving politicians in Washington, but he is by far the worst representative of what the American people want. We are sad state in this country when men and women elected to serve to represent the citizens, come to Washington and forget why they are there and how they got there. We are no longer a government of the people, by the people or for the people. Most politicans represent special interests NOT citizens who are becoming more and more disenchanted with ALL.

    December 14, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  21. Donald in CA

    Its the democrats fault that they keep pandering to this guy who clearly likes attention. Democrats should have cut him loose a long time ago. They tried to earlier this year but Obama said keep him on. What a mistake.

    December 14, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  22. Ben in Texas

    I want to see Lieberman give up his platinum health care plan. I want to see him give back all the money he's taken from insurance companies, Big Pharma, and other health industry interests. I want to see his wife quit her spokeswoman position and sever her ties with the health industry. I want him to publicly criticize Israel for having single-payer health care.

    Then, I might listen to a word he says.

    December 14, 2009 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  23. Change In America

    Vote Lieberman out the office he is a problem to Demoncrate.
    Lieberman need the demoncrate who would elect this guy back in the office.

    Lieberman got to go

    December 14, 2009 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  24. Kevin in Ohio

    Go are a true patriot! The left hates you for speaking the truth. Do not let their fascism and hate overcom e you. They have but one item on their agenda...the total destruction of this once-great nation.

    December 14, 2009 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |

    Joe Lieberman is the Republicans hero. Down with Obamacare

    December 14, 2009 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
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