The Corner

Iowa Prediction–Sorta

Kathryn, I predict Lieberman is going to lose, and lose badly. No doubt this has something to do with the fact that he’s decided not to contest the state. All joking aside, the Lieberman situation is disturbing and revealing. He avoided the state to begin with because of the dovishness of Iowa Democrats. Now, with what looks to be several candidates marching out of Iowa with momentum, and with Clark having gained in New Hampshire in the meantime, it seems as though Lieberman is finished. This is not a surprise. True, just after Saddam’s capture, it looked like Lieberman might get a boost, although even then most observers doubted any Lieberman uptick would hold. It didn’t. Granted, Lieberman strikes many as too much of a nice guy-not tough enough to be presidential. But when the party’s well regarded former vice-presidential nominee does this badly, it’s meaningful. What Lieberman’s failure reveals is just how dead the Scoop Jackson wing of the Democratic party is. Yes, Gephardt and Edwards are better than the rest of the field on defense. That’s good for the country. But Lieberman’s failure says something sad about how little traction a tough defense posture has with the Democratic party.