March 30th, 2008
11:15 AM ET
14 years ago

Lieberman likens McCain to JFK

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Lieberman and McCain recently went on a legislative factfinding trip to the Middle East including a visit to the Western Wall in Israel."]
(CNN) - Sen. Joseph Lieberman, I-Connecticut, compared presumptive Republican nominee John McCain to a surprising figure on Sunday — Democratic icon John F. Kennedy.

“I'm a Democrat who came to the party in the era of President John F. Kennedy,” Lieberman told George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s “This Week. ”It's a strange turn of the road when I find among the candidates running this year that the one, in my opinion, closest to the Kennedy legacy, the John F. Kennedy legacy, is John S. McCain.”

The Democrat-turned Independent endorsed McCain in early February, surprising many in the Democratic party. Lieberman, who ran with Al Gore on the Democratic presidential ticket eight years ago, insisted that his views have remained consistent while the Democratic Party changed.

“The Democratic Party today was not the party it was in 2000. It's been effectively taken over by a small group on the left of the party that is protectionist, isolationist and basically… very, very hyperpartisan. So it pains me,” he said.

A staunch supporter of the Iraq war, Lieberman recently traveled to Baghdad with McCain and Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina. Though he commended Hillary Clinton for her vote on declaring the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps a terrorist group, he slammed both Democratic presidential candidates on their foreign policy positions.

“The Democratic candidates have spent most of their time attacking the war in Iraq… they've honestly not done anything substantial to advance our cause in Afghanistan or against Al Qaeda.”

–CNN's Peter Lanier

Filed under: Joe Lieberman • John McCain
soundoff (27 Responses)
  1. DrFill

    Way to remind people why they didn't vote for you, Joe.

    March 30, 2008 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  2. Bilbo983

    Lieberman needs his head examined! He must be hetting senile to even imagine that Senator McCain is closest to the Kennedy legacy, the John F. Kennedy legacy! What an insult to JFK's name. JFK was NEVER a flip-flopper like Senator McCain. JFK didn't keep slipping his tongue like John McCain. JFK was a natural in uniting the people of America; Senator McCain merely plays the Pied Piper out of deceit. JDK was never a fake!

    March 30, 2008 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  3. Julia in CT

    Joe Liberman is a disgrace to my State. Talk about buyers' remorse. What happened to you Joe? You sold out and sold us out in the process. Can I have my votes back, please?

    March 30, 2008 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  4. Texan on a Mission of truth!

    Pleas shut up Liberman. McCain liken to JFK. OH MY GOD! To you OBAMA you had better clean up your act and start trying to mend fences with Hillary right now. iI you should be so lucky to win the nomination you will need her to defeat McCain. With out her, SIMPLY, YOU LOSE. HILLARY 08

    March 30, 2008 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  5. Just Ask Caroline

    I think I'd rather believe Caroline that Joe.

    Obama 08

    March 30, 2008 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  6. Tex

    What a joke! Has Lieberman totally lost it and is just sucking up to be McCain's VP?

    That is an insult to the memory of President John F. Kennedy!

    March 30, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  7. dafew

    Leiberman has lost his mind....... I once thought he was a man of character now I think he is off his rocker. It is no wonder he did not get the Democratic Party Nomination for his senate seat.

    March 30, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  8. Renee Osterwalder/Expat Winterthur Switzerland

    Lieberman has some reality issues! And I feel that he is still drinking some bitter "haterade" because he feels he was treated unfairly by the Dem. Party.

    March 30, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  9. marek

    Sen. Joseph Lieberman is loosing his mind, this is what you get
    if you hang with Sen. McCain and Sen. Lindsey Graham.

    March 30, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  10. Joe

    Ummm yes I can see a tiny resemblance. Maybe in the eyes. Certainly not in knowing nothing about the economy or in not being able to discern between between Al Queada and Muqtaba.

    March 30, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  11. Bayou Joe

    Amen to That. JFK and McCain share one thing in common. They love and respect my country. Have no allegiance to foreign entities and know that this country is about capitalism not socialism. That is why Latin Americans that came here to escape Socialists regimes
    in Mexico, Cuba, El Salavador and Honduras, Chile, etc. and are now voting and their children who listened to their parents, will go for McCain in November.

    March 30, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  12. Mark

    Iraq has nothing to do with Afghanistan or Al Qaeda. When was the last time we have been aggressive in helping Afghanistan or fighting AL Qaeda. All McCain has to say on the subject is "War with Iran, continued presence in Iraq, War in Iran".

    March 30, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  13. Ronald

    Looks like McCain has found his ruining mate!

    March 30, 2008 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  14. Jane

    Somebody (see: Connecticut) PLEASE vote this ignorant fool out of office.

    March 30, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  15. Brian

    Kennedy-McCain is the most ludicrous comparison I've ever heard. Lieberman's SAT scores must have been atrocious.

    The democratic party has become a wider, more moderate and more inclusive party since 2000... Joe Lieberman is just miffed that the people of Connecticut tried to oust him during a democratic uprising in the last election.

    Talk about a politician who doesn't stand for anything except his own survival... Lieberman is a sad endorsement for McCain.

    March 30, 2008 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  16. DonnieJ

    Thinking back on all of the past presidents, I also can't think of a more apt comparison for McCain than JFK. The youth of the candidate, the hope he inspired, the promise of a new course for the country, name is "John" – that's McCain hands down.

    Wake up, Joe.

    March 30, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  17. Tommy in St. Louis

    This must be some kind of joke. April Fool's Day isn't until the day after tomorrow, you know!

    March 30, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  18. Conservative

    JFK wanted government secrecy to end, McCain wants it to increase. JFK would of protected our borders, McCain wants them wide open. JFK wanted to get rid of the Federal reserve, McCain doesn't even know what it is.

    March 30, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  19. Norm

    Bad news for the Democrats

    March 30, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  20. Gnosticman

    Lieberman has got to be the least trustworthy politician whose last name is not Bush.

    March 30, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |

    Please, Lieberman, Let's not insult Pres. John F. Kennedy with
    camparing McCain to Kennedy. What an insult for our late, great,
    Pres. John F. Kennedy. McCain could not hold a candle to Kennedy.
    Lieberman, the trader for a trip abroad, can never convince American
    of Anything.

    March 30, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  22. Let People be People

    Lieberman is entitled to his opinion but I am interested in what comparisons he's talking about. Was the democratic party in 2000 the same as it was when Kennedy was president? What's his view on us entering in a war on false pretenses? I wish this presidential vice-president wannabe would return to the way he was in 2004 when he ran with Kerry. He seems to be opportunistic.

    March 30, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  23. Michael Guinn- Ventura, CA

    He CAN'T BE SERIOUS! He needs to go ahead and move his Independent status to the GOP and get it over with.
    What a disappointment!

    March 30, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  24. Trang, Fremont, CA

    I don't live during Kennedy's time, although I am aware of that many people have a fond memory of him. Why make the comparison? McCain is McCain, Obama is Obama, and Hillary is Hillary – each one is unique ... and I bet some people will say ... I know Kennedy and McCain is no Kennedy as a reaction to this comment.

    March 30, 2008 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  25. James in Kamiah

    That's like Likening George W. Bush to George Washington! Tell him to take that back! Them's fightin words. The liar.

    March 30, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
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