Sunday, January 13, 2008

If You Want a Friend, Get a Dog

Once again, President Truman's old adage that there are no friends in politics has been put on embarrassing display. Sens. John Kerry (D-MA) and Joe Lieberman (I-CT) are the latest entrants in the "who's lower than a dog" sweepstakes. Just this past week, Kerry gave his much-sought after, eagerly awaited endorsement to Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL). Yawn. Who gives a crap. The only thing remotely interesting here is the personal spitefulness with which the whole thing was accomplished, which says more about Kerry than it does about any imagined dis that may have been delivered to his more gifted 2004 running mate, former Sen. John Edwards (D-NC).

Of course, it's well known that the Kerry/Edwards relationship has been strained since early in the 2004 presidential race, when the more charismatic phenom beat Kerry in South Carolina and then proceeded to eclipse him on the campaign trail despite his #2 status on the ticket -- not a tough job, given Kerry's stoneface demeanor. But it's true that Edwards and his camp never really embraced the traditional role of the VP candidate as heat seeking missile, and there's talk that Edwards never shared his campaign lists with Kerry -- perhaps the Edwards camp simply viewed the veep nomination as a steeping stone. What a shocker! Truly unforgivable! Everyone knows that Edwards began his 2008 campaign before the 2004 results were cold, but the Kerry camp seems to think that action broke a pledge that Edwards wouldn't run until Kerry had decided on another go around (yeah, right, like we'd support that loser again!). But the word is that Kerry saw Edwards' 2008 aspirations as a betrayal, and apparently now believes what goes around comes around. The sad fact is that Kerry is trying vainly to make himself relevant in a political world that dropped him like a hot potato, and his anti-endorsement is sour grapes about Edwards' continued prominence as well -- taken together, it is not a well balanced meal.

And of course, in December, Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) turned his back on Democrats (again) when he endorsed Sen. John McCain (R-AZ). Never mind that Joe caucuses with the Democrats or that it's their majority which provides him with the committee chairmanship (aka, bully pulpit) the he loves so much. It seems sadly appropriate that good ol' Joe gave the Dems the cold shoulder from the frozen tundra of New Hampshire. Oh, and don't forget that good ol' Joe lent his weighty support to McCain instead of home state Sen. Chris Dodd (D-CT), as is traditional -- yeah, remember, Joe, when Dodd was the only senator who endorsed your wannabe, also-ran candidacy back in 2004, when you had your own delusions of grandeur about the Oval Office having your name on it? Now, I know Dodd endorsed Ned LaMont after he beat you in the democratic primary -- as did the rest of the Democratic party. You lost the party's nomination fair and square and for good reason, Joe. Dodd was just playing by the rules. But paybacks are hell, huh? I guess you learned about that from former Vice President and newly minted Nobel laureate Al Gore, who endorsed Gov. Howard Dean (D-VT) over you, his former running mate. Bet that stung.

What's next, a McCain-Lieberman ticket? Hmmm.... well, they share bylines, write legislation together, why not crisscross the country together in a vain attempt to show their mutual obsession with a failed war policy really ain't so bad after all? While Lieberman says he has no ambitions to be VP (sure, Joe, 'cause your politics over the past few years haven't demonstrated an ounce of personal ambition), Sen. McCain credits good ol' Joe's endorsement with helping him out in New Hampshire. So, he owes you, right Joe? Don't bet on it... there are no friends in politics, as you've amply demonstrated. Don't count on being rewarded for this latest defection. Joe, we're not shocked by your endorsement/defection. In fact, you're becoming depressingly consistent. It's no wonder none of the democratic candidates asked for your support.

No comments: