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. Joe

    I would elect Joe Liebermen President. this is one of the onoy few people in all of Congress that is a man of his convictions on the war in Iraq, Afganistan and Health Care. I just love all the people out there that continue to insist that the American people want this Health Care bill that Reid and Pelosi have drawn up in the back room. Lokk at the polls. 60% of the people are now against it. Not only that 50% are strongly opposed verses 23% that are strongly for it.

    December 14, 2009 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  2. Fair_is_Fair

    I don't understand why the Democratic leadership just show some backbone and strip him of any and all chairmanship of Senate commitees. While he may vote with Dems on some issues, he's by far an enigma to the Democratic Party. I say get rid of him and let him go to the retardicans. Let his constituents vote him out for being the two faced senator that he is. What a discgrace to the party.

    I expect retardicans to vote witht heir party as much as I do with Dems voting witht heir party's core values. Take him out if he's not with the majority.....the retardicans do it all the time.....what are Dem leaders afraid of. GET RID OF HIM!!

    December 14, 2009 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  3. ann

    He won't be for long.
    The "real" democrats will band together and vote for legislation to end any kind of fillibusters, utilize reconciliation, or anotherwords, WHAT EVER it takes to marginalize Lieberman – period.

    December 14, 2009 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  4. No Obamacare........

    no death socialized socialism.......

    Back to American basics and the constitution......

    Obama is ONE and DONE.

    December 14, 2009 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  5. Bev

    Stand your ground Joe!!!

    Don't let them destroy our health care system, economy, and our country!!!

    Thank you Joe!!!!

    December 14, 2009 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  6. AJ

    Lieberman and his wife have been bought and paid for by the pharmaceutical industry. It's time for Democrats to grow a spine and strip him of his committee seats, put him on the back bench where he belongs and close the money sucking naval base at Groton CT.

    December 14, 2009 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  7. gary davis Harbor Oregon proud american

    the word for him is ( JOKE ) he is an idiot looking for fame
    and he now shows who he works for ..not the people but the insurance companies again he is a joke 🙂

    December 14, 2009 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  8. I am the not-so-great and powerless wizard of Rush


    Time to neuter Joe.

    December 14, 2009 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  9. Barbara Independent in NY

    The truth is Joe, you don't want anything to be done about the insurance cartels. They've paid you so much money that you don't really care about the people that you "represent".

    December 14, 2009 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  10. Chanel

    Forget him, Reid... USE THE NUCLEAR OPTION. 51 votes will get us health care and everyone who votes against it can pay for it at the polls!

    December 14, 2009 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  11. JT the Show Me State College Freshman

    Dear Senator Lieberman,
    After watching part of your interview with CBS, and after reading about some things you said in the last couple of days and today, I have to say that I disagree with the way that you are acting. There is no problem with disagreeing with your fellow senatorial consitutants, but as you should know by now, it would be very professional of you to offer up an alternative if you politically disagree with the bill. People will not take you in a credible sense if you just disagree with no alternative solution offered to help out with this very important issue. The American people are not very happy about the way most of the senators are acting at this current moment. If you have an logical and reasonable alternative that provides competition to the United States healthcare system, deficit neutral or negative to be even better, curbs cost in a responsible way in the long run, and gives all Americans a chance to have a chance to have the American given right of choice to choose there health insurance, then please present the the congress and the American people that alternative solution. At least debate the bill in an professional, intelligent manner Senator Lieberman. That's all the big majority of the American people are asking for.

    December 14, 2009 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  12. linda

    Reid: Grow a couple and kick Lieberman out of the Democratic

    He is a traitor, and is a true Republican.

    Stop bending over and holding your ankles for this wingut!

    December 14, 2009 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  13. conservatives are useless

    go joe I guess once you are vote out you will have some were to go
    its not about the people its about your own self interest the reality is
    that in todays job market people cannot get insurance and that hidden
    tax you pay is when that person shows up in the hospital, most people
    can"t read let alone understand the issue and the people who do
    are only worried about themselves and the insurance ceo are laughing
    all the way to the bank anyone speak chinese

    December 14, 2009 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  14. Slider

    The Senator from Connecticut is not the problem: the problem for Democrats in the Senate is that they will have to face their constituents come election day after passing a bill that will dramatically alter the citizens of this country's live, and they will do so based on a pack of lies.

    December 14, 2009 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  15. NC

    Why doesn't Lieberman just join the Republican Cacus. He campaigned for McCain. Enough of this hypocrite.

    December 14, 2009 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  16. George Bush - Worst President Ever

    I say let the Repubs and Lieberman filibuster. Let them have to filibuster thru the holidays. Let the American people watch the do nothings do what they do best. That is, talk, and do nothing. Let's see how quickly support for the Republican party goes down the drain.

    December 14, 2009 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  17. Mike1952

    Reid just looks crooked in the photo. He's a slime ball of the first order. He deserves to be turned out in 2010.

    Good for Lieberman. Hold the line on spending before we're bankrupt. Oops, too late. What sense does it make to add more demand to a program already set to go broke in 2017. Taxes, taxes and more taxes. Oh, i guess that would be more redistribution wouldn't it?

    December 14, 2009 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  18. sandy

    The Dems need to kick Lieberman to the curb!

    December 14, 2009 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  19. gl, From Pittsburgh

    Once a tune coat is always a turn. The Democratic got trick a second time by Liemerman. It is a Conservative and Dems should not have trusting this man.

    December 14, 2009 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  20. gl, From Pittsburgh

    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.

    "We don't need to keep adding on to the back of this horse until the horse breaks down and we get nothing done," Lieberman said.


    December 14, 2009 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  21. unemployed by Obama

    Then maybe Reid should listen, Its time to VOTE OUT the lieing democrates and Spending Republicans and time to IMPEACH the traitor Obama.

    December 14, 2009 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  22. Jamie

    Leave Lieberman behind! He thinks he can play both sides, and while I am surprised he's kept the candle burning at both ends for so long, the two are getting ever closer to the middle. That's when he gets burned -for having no set of guiding principles that gives him a course (except with Republicans when it comes to war and military) and his diregard for doing the hard work needed to change the course of our country. I don't think Baldwin should run against him, but Connecticut (and the DNC) needs to get him out of office.

    December 14, 2009 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  23. gl, From Pittsburgh

    One monkey should no be able to stop the show. Liemerman have proving he will not suppose any type of bill just the Republicans.

    December 14, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  24. mjm

    The bill is the problem, not Lieberman. If you need 60 votes to pass a bill, the bill is the problem. And don't say they are in the pockets of this and that....both sides have their special interests. Medicare going broke faster does not serve anyone’s interests.

    Write a better bill.

    And quit promising everyone free health care. Medicare costs around $250/month…This public option is not going to be free.

    December 14, 2009 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  25. C Spurgeon

    I think hes disgusting and sincerely hope he gets voted out. He is on Insurance payroll and cares nothing for averagen America. Sounds like his wife is on the take too.

    Why not 6 year term limits for both Congress and President. Limit their benefits to those 6 years and then send them back to work like everyone else. The president won't have to spend two years campaigning and the senater and house can be split in half every three years to maintain continuity.Think of the savings in dollars and attention to their job instead of having to raise money for another tun. An end to the olde whitehaired men majorityu.

    Anyhow Liebermann is one of the worst....

    December 14, 2009 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
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