Election 2006: Lieberman vs. Lamont

Posted by Mike Merritt in Politics on

As the democratic primary is approching rather quickly, I thought that it was high time I start an on-going series about this year’s election. I’ll try not to focus too much on the races going on around the nation, but may increase the number of entries around election day.

Obviously, one of the hottest races in this year’s election season is that of the Senatorial fight between the two candidates from my own state of Connecticut: Joseph Lieberman and Ned Lamont.

The latest Quinnipiac poll shows Lamont leading by thirteen points, which isn’t bad at all for a guy nobody knew six months ago. Lamont sure is adamant in his stance about Lieberman’s support for the war, and I don’t believe I’m alone in thinking that this is what’s helping Lamont the most. His other major issues seems to be the energy bill supported by Bush and Cheney, for which Lieberman voted, and universal health care.

However, I think Lamont has a major fault: no matter how many times he says he has a stance on other issues, he really is only focusing on the one issue. He hasn’t said a whole lot about anything else. Most of his campaign (at least, what I’ve seen) has focused on Lieberman’s closeness to the President. While this is all well and good, I want to know what Lamont will do for his constituents. I have only today heard Lamont’s ideas for universal health care, but I’m not sure it is enough. People are clinging to Lamont because they grew weary of the war, and that has certainly helped him.

So, it sounds like I’m for Lieberman, doesn’t it? Not exactly; I, like Lamont, do not follow Lieberman’s support for this war. On the other hand, Lieberman’s change in stance from most of the Democratic party, for whatever reason, shows a good example of the system of government we employ in this country. If this were the UK for instance, Lieberman’s support could get him thrown out of the party. Instead, the voters must vote him out. I think this is a good thing.

Lieberman obviously has a slightly uphill battle if he wishes to defeat Lamont. The hill may increase significantly if Lamont wins the primary, since many Democrats will probably flock to support him if he wins. Notice, or read about, how silent they’ve been about whether or not they’d support Lamont if he won? They probably are biding their time, waiting to see the outcome of the primary.

Lieberman has undoubtedly done a lot for his constituents, but his one problem has already been highlighted, the war. It seems unlikely that he is going to change his tone any time soon, but I think he, like Lamont, need to spend time telling people what he will do for them if he wishes to be re-elected.

So, who am I going to support. Not sure yet, but I think Lamont needs to show a lot more than just the issue of the war. No point in electing a Senator if he does not plan to do much during his term. Yet, because of the war, the reality of his success in the polls is great.

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