The Campaign Spot

GOP or Retirement for Joe Lieberman?

Would Connecticut Republicans even want another six years of Joe Lieberman? They may have embraced him in 2006 against vehemently antiwar Democrat Ned Lamont when their own nominee was a long-shot also-ran, but that was a stimulus, a TARP, and an Obamacare ago. Republicans are in a different mood now, and the issue matrix motivating the public has changed.

Considering how many were willing to embrace Linda McMahon, how many of Connecticut’s GOP primary voters would prefer a genuine Republican, and urge Lieberman to hang up his hat after a long and distinguished career? (Lieberman is 68.) Politico contends that if Lieberman is on the ballot in 2012, it will be with the GOP:

Joe Lieberman essentially has two options for 2012: Retire or become a Republican. The Connecticut senator and Democratic exile hasn’t made up his mind whether to seek a fifth term, Lieberman and those close to him say. But if he does, the GOP ticket appears to offer his best shot at reelection.

Lieberman recently told POLITICO he hasn’t yet decided whether to retire or run as an independent, a Democrat or a Republican. “All those options are still alive,” he said. In private conversations, too, Lieberman is openly considering all the possibilities, said John Droney, a longtime Lieberman ally and confidant who spoke to the senator recently. “He thinks he can still serve the people of Connecticut. The question is how,” said Droney, a former state Democratic chairman. “It’s the politics that’s in his way, not the people.”

If Lieberman is going to switch parties, probably better to do it sooner rather than later.

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