June 4th, 2008
12:21 PM ET
14 years ago

Lieberman attacks Obama over foreign policy

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/06/04/art.lieb.gi.jpg caption="Lieberman had sharp words for Obama."](CNN) - On the first day of the general election campaign, the very first Republican conference call attacking presumptive Democratic nominee Barack Obama featured his party's 2000 vice presidential nominee, Sen. Joe Lieberman.

"Senator Obama argued today that American foreign policy in recent years has essentially sort of strengthened Iran," said Lieberman on a conference call for reporters hosted by John McCain's campaign Wednesday. "..If Israel is in danger today, it's not because of American foreign policy, which has been strongly supportive of Israel in every way. It's not because of what we’ve done in Iraq, it’s because Iran is a fanatical terrorist expansionist state."

On the same call, Republican Rep. Eric Cantor of Ohio said Obama's speech did nothing to dispel doubts about his commitment to Israel.

Both men spoke shortly after Obama addressed the American Israel Public Affairs Committee in Washington. The GOP has been hoping that concerns by some in the Jewish community about the Illinois senator's willingness to diplomatically engage Iranian leaders will allow them to make inroads with that crucial Democratic voting bloc.

Lieberman, who endorsed John McCain earlier this year, has been increasingly critical of Obama - particularly his goal to end the war in Iraq. The Democrat-turned-independent has been a strong supporter of President Bush's Middle East and Iraq policies.

Obama endorsed Lieberman in his 2006 Democratic primary battle against challenger Ned Lamont. But after the Connecticut senator lost and decided to run as an independent, Obama switched his support to Lamont, who shared his opposition to the Iraq war.

soundoff (577 Responses)
  1. Doug Pancoast

    It's Lieberman's foreign policy beliefs that represent "my way or the highway" politics. Let's get that straight.

    June 4, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  2. Ralph

    Joe who?

    June 4, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  3. David, Santa Rosa, CA

    This guy seems to be around a lot lately. He's always nipping at the cuff of McCain. Lieberman & McCain... two old politico's from "back in the day."

    A vote for McCain is completely insane.

    June 4, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  4. dlc

    Lieberman is a coward, liar and traitor. There was nothing "democratic" about him when he was on the Gore ticket and he's only drifted further beyond the land if reason.

    Ron is right - Take him into the Republican party, please!

    June 4, 2008 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  5. aka1577, MI

    The Dems need to strip Lieberman of his committee chairmanship come next congressional session Jan. 2009.

    June 4, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  6. Chuck

    Obama's policy = "What can we give you to make you leave us alone?"

    June 4, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  7. Hannah Stevens

    Lieberman called the Independent Democrat, they need to rename him the Independent traitor Republican. I wonder ho much longer this guy can lie to stay in office....

    June 4, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  8. Theory

    Joe Lieberman, The Homeless Politician !!!

    June 4, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  9. REAL American for Obama

    I'm an Obama supporter and I want to see if he can stand the heat. Don't get mad at Lieberman, he's being a politician. If Obama can't respond to the Republican attack machine, then he doesn't deserve to be President.

    Obama will be fine. He won an extraordinary campaign and is well-prepared to take on the Republicans thanks mostly to Hillary Clinton.

    June 4, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  10. Erik, Bowie MD

    It's too bad Connecticut voters can't recall Lieberman.

    June 4, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  11. Just Plain Tired - St. Louis

    Lieberman, who? Who can even keep up with where this man stands? Is he a Democrat, Republican, Independent, Libertarian, Jewish, what? Maybe his two cents will matter when he can figure out who he is. For now, let's just help him remember his name so he can at least have his mind made up about that.

    June 4, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  12. Luis

    Lieberman at one time was as great Democrat, and a great moderate. He is gently going into Zell Miller territory. In 2006, I would have, had I lived in Ct., voted for him as an Independent. Today, I wouldn't vote for him as dog catcher. Being a conservative to moderate Democrat is one thing...but to bait Obama on Israel, when he knows Obama is 100% pro-Israel, is foolish....to support John McCain is foolish....to become a puppet for the right wing is foolish, particularly in light of his present positions supporting universla health care, progressive taxation, repeal of most of the Bush tax cuts, the environment, gay rights, etc. Lieberman on domestic issues is a Democrat, and yet he is supporting a GOP that is out to destroy all he has fought for. And why? Because he's mad about 2006. Lieberman won in 2006, depsite what the left tried to do to him, and he's out for revenge. The only victim in this drive for revenge will be Lieberman's public testimony as a fighter for the causes he has supported his entire career. He is giving up a legacy in favor of a mere moment with McCain. For shame. I wouldn't vote for him today for dog catcher.

    June 4, 2008 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  13. mohamed

    Lieberman is going with the plan. He is putting more pressure on Obama to support the AIPAC. Lieberman's loyalty is for AIPAC and for himself, not for the US.
    Stop the pressure.
    Obama brings the change
    Yes we can.

    June 4, 2008 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  14. Judas Lieberman

    That comment makes no sense.
    Jeez, Joe, just go away. Please.
    On the plus side, maybe this time he can ruin a republican's presidential campaign.

    June 4, 2008 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  15. nitro

    Paula Jones has no idea what she is talking about. Joe Lieberman is not reaching across party lines. Hes bitter and playing get back with the democrats. What he dont understand is that the dems saw his value in the 2000 election and decided to toss his ashcan under the bus. Believe in that change idiot.

    June 4, 2008 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  16. Rennie Frank in Stevensville, Montana

    Paul has not been paying attention. McCain quit being the maverick when he crumbled on the issue of torture...and went along with the Bush administration by "compromising?" Talk about a Scoobie-Doo moment there, when a US Senator who was tortured as a POW himself..."compromised" on torture. Heck...once he compromised on torture he just began going along with Bush on everythingelse. And what in the heck has he voted against every GI Bill or VA Bill since he has been in office. Shame on him. As the daughter of a Vietnam vet I am more than disgusted and sickened that anyone would find McCain a "great supporter of the troups." That brings us to... Lieberman who became a Bush lap dog and was so...all about me... that he sold out to the Republicans who put him over the top as an Independent because he lost his primary contest for re-election. He couldn't read the writing in the voting booth, which said you are no longer representing our interests, you're done. Now...Lieberman is McCain's valet or handmaiden if you prefer.

    June 4, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  17. John Bardon

    Joe Liberman does not care about the security of this country . All he cares about is the next president who place the Middle East Security on top of His/Her Agenda.

    The key here for Joe Liberman is the security of the State of Israel. The security of the USA is secondary.

    This is a fact

    June 4, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  18. pee-d-feet cause something stinks, indy

    Leiberman, I bet your state is SORRY for allowing you another crack at representing them. I bet they wish they could take it back.

    Didn't somebody use the JUDAS line already? ...Your days of representation will soon end and the DEMS will be the better for it.

    Now, I see America didn't allow AL GORE to win because YOU were on the ticket!!! They saw right through your HATCHED-MAN mentality.

    You're now considered a REPUBLICAN!!!

    June 4, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  19. Diann, Richton Park, IL

    Lieberman is no more an Independent or Democrat than I am a space alien!

    I hope he's never elected into office again, traitor!

    June 4, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  20. Gary Mitchell

    I really hope that Leiberman is the VP choice for McBush. I think it would be fitting if he became the first person to represent both parties as VP and lose. It would redefine the definition of looser and in Webster his picture would be placed next to the word with no definition required.

    June 4, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  21. John in OR

    >Obama's policy = "What can we give you to make you leave us alone?"

    Yeah, theres nothing worse than negotiating. Everyone knows Iran is our enemy, we should just bomb them, and while we're at it anyone else that disagrees with us. Why talk when we could just end a few houndred thousand lives?

    June 4, 2008 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  22. Herman Schmitt

    Demo Republican Liebermann

    Cause : Minority-Freak Joe Liebermann would sacrifice any country,
    including his "beloved " America to accomplish his
    dirty work of Lieberman-Politiks.

    Effect : Terrorism as it has always been.

    is it that hard to understand ???-

    Do we really need another wake up – call ????

    June 4, 2008 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  23. shawn

    Sounds like senator Leiberman is more loyal to the state of Israel than to the United States of America!! Although the interests of two countries are 99% the same and we have to continue to support them but it does not mean that we sacrifice our national security concerns and international reputation for them all the time!!!

    June 4, 2008 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  24. Traitor Joe's

    Joe is a coward, traitor, turncoat, Bush lackey and Putz.

    June 4, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  25. Tom in Anaheim, CA

    Joe Lieberman is simply a covert Israeli lobbyist. His primary loyalty lies with Israel and the effort to make America the "big stick" to protect Israel.
    He will support the Bush/McCain doctrine 100%. Despite his alleged voting record in the Senate, make no mistake when it comes to issues favoring Israel Joe supports them every time.

    My hope is when Obama is elected he and the Congress Democratic leadership will marginalize Right Wing Joe and relegate him to voting with the Republican block. Kill his influance on committees and make him impotent. He should not be allowed to infuse any debate with the Democratic candidate or the party platform since he has become a Republican on all foreign policy issues.

    June 4, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
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