(Note: This was written by Gabe as a compliment to the Lamont endorsement)
While I agree with the sentiments expressed in the main endorsement, I would like to add a few thoughts on three issues not mentioned above that have helped form my view that Ned Lamont would best represent Connecticut Democrats in the general election. Generally, there is a time for bipartisanship and a time to stick to partisan guns; in my opinion, Senator Lieberman too often sees the former and rarely sees the latter.
First, on the bankruptcy bill, regular readers are well aware of my belief that this legislation will ultimately be known as a debacle of Hidenberg-esqe proportions (for a good review of the reasons why, please see Professor Elizabeth Warren’s work on the Talking Points Memo blog). Senator Lieberman, after voting with the Republican majority to allow the bill to come to a vote (the crucial vote in this case as a majority was clear but a 60 vote super-majority was not), voted against the bill and came home with the message that he had fought the Republican Bankruptcy Bill. In this case, the Senator’s “moderation” in not supporting a filibuster will ultimately hurt many of Connecticut’s families when they need help the most. And savvy Connecticut voters are smart enough to be insulted by the Senator’s “I voted against the bill after I voted for it” campaign trickery. Mr. Lamont would have fought against the bankruptcy bill from beginning to end.
On Social Security, while I received a door-hanger yesterday from the Lieberman campaign stating that the Senator had stopped “Bush’s disastrous plan to privatize Social Security”, the reality is that Senator Lieberman equivocated on the Bush’s Social Security phase-out plan, made noises about working with the Republicans on it, and only announced that he was against it when it was clear that the plan was dead. Again, Connecticut voters are not as “low-information” as the Lieberman campaign seems to want us to be. Mr. Lamont is strongly against the “privatization” of Social Security.
Finally, on reproductive privacy issues, the Senator has taken a recent position that renders my support in the primary impossible. He displayed a shocking willingness to place the burden of finding emergency Plan B medication on rape victims rather than on private hospitals that receive public funding. In stating, “In Connecticut, it shouldn't take more than a short ride to get to another hospital”, he displayed a callous disregard for the plight of rape victims who want to prevent becoming impregnated by their rapists. Mr. Lamont is in favor of requiring all hospitals that receive public funds to disperse emergency prescriptions of Plan B to rape victims.
On each of these issues, Senator Lieberman had a chance to stand for core democratic principles: helping people enduring a perilous economic situation is more important than enriching the banking and credit card industries, standing proud in protecting the most successful social program in our country’s history in Social Security, and protecting rape victims from having to suffer the indignity of becoming impregnated by their rapist against their will. On each issue (and it is important to note in response to the Lieberman campaign’s claim that Mr. Lamont is running only on opposition to the Iraq war that these are all issues separate from Iraq), Mr. Lieberman passed up that chance where Mr. Lamont would not have. It is for these reasons that I support Ned Lamont in the Democratic Primary.