30 July 2006


New York Times:

On the Armed Services Committee, Mr. Lieberman
has left it to Republicans like Lindsey Graham of
South Carolina to investigate the administration’s
actions. In 2004, Mr. Lieberman praised Defense
Secretary Donald Rumsfeld for expressing regret
about Abu Ghraib, then added: “I cannot help but
say, however, that those who were responsible
for killing 3,000 Americans on September 11th,
2001, never apologized.” To suggest even
rhetorically that the American military could be held
to the same standard of behavior as terrorists is
outrageous, and a good example of how avidly the
senator has adopted the Bush spin and helped
the administration avoid accounting for Abu Ghraib.

Mr. Lieberman prides himself on being a legal
thinker and a champion of civil liberties. But he
appointed himself defender of Attorney General
Alberto Gonzales and the administration’s policy of
holding hundreds of foreign citizens in prison
without any due process. He seconded Mr. Gonzales’s
sneering reference to the “quaint” provisions of the
Geneva Conventions. He has shown no interest in
prodding his Republican friends into investigating
how the administration misled the nation about
Iraq’s weapons. There is no use having a senator
famous for getting along with Republicans if he
never challenges them on issues of profound

If Mr. Lieberman had once stood up and taken the
lead in saying that there were some places a
president had no right to take his country even
during a time of war, neither he nor this page
would be where we are today. But by suggesting
that there is no principled space for that kind of
opposition, he has forfeited his role as a
conscience of his party, and has forfeited our

Mr. Lamont, a wealthy businessman from
Greenwich, seems smart and moderate, and he
showed spine in challenging the senator while
other Democrats groused privately. He does not
have his opponent’s grasp of policy yet. But this
primary is not about Mr. Lieberman’s legislative
record. Instead it has become a referendum on his
warped version of bipartisanship, in which the
never-ending war on terror becomes an excuse for
silence and inaction. We endorse Ned Lamont in
the Democratic primary for Senate in Connecticut.