Let’s Party:  First off, we’re going to be having the much-talked about FDL drinks get-together here in New Haven next Thursday evening, July 20.  CTKeith arranged for us to meet at the lovely Owenego Inn in Branford (you can see it here). 

Time:  7:00 pm
Address:  40 Linden Avenue, Branford, CT

Please join us, we will have some very special guests and there will be plenty of opportunity to mingle with local bloggers, get the low-down about what’s really going on here on the ground and find out ways you can help the campaign.  The energy here is really great, I’m having a ball and I hope everyone who can make it will show up and enjoy the enthusiasm that pervades this groundbreaking grass-roots campaign.   

Anything But Substance:  Lieberman merde-flinger Sean Smith desperately tries to distract from the issues in a debate against Lamont campaign manager Tom Swan, who says Lieberman’s new "kiss my ring" party is a vanity party no different than vanity license plates. Watch Swan get pissed at the smug lies: "The last candidate who tried these cheap political gimicks was John Rowland."  (If you don’t know who Rowland was, here you go.)  If Lamont actually wins this race, most folks will credit the "W" to Swan.  Watch him on the YouTube above (thanks to Scarce).  

Desperation:  The New York Times has a portrait of Lieberman up that makes him look like such a sad, desperate loser you almost feel sorry for him.  That Judas kiss?  Killing him.  Then his colleagues come out and start patting his hand and calling him a "great man" and talking about what delicate flower he is:

Friends say his predicament has left Mr. Lieberman nervous, dispirited and angry, a portrait of a politician stunned to face opponents as passionate in their loathing of his principles as he is proud of them….Mr. Lieberman’s allies discuss him these days with a tinge of sadness, as if mourning a kindly gentleman who has wandered into a bad neighborhood.

This is the man who told rape victims to take a hike.  Have they actually read any of his campaign literature?  Honestly the bubble these people live in is staggaring.  (And BTW, what a pack of sissies.  Geesh.  You’d think people in leadership positions would be too ashamed to cop to this wimp-o-rama.)

Meanwhile, the local press shows that they are light years ahead of their national counterparts when it comes to covering this race.  While the NYT clutches pearls, David Lightman of the Courant dismantles Holy Joe’s claims about his progressive voting record:

By the numbers, Joe Lieberman is a true, consistent Democrat.

He votes with Democratic colleagues almost all the time. His record gets him high marks from interest groups close to the party, from the AFL-CIO to the NAACP.

But dig beneath the votes and there’s plenty of ammunition for critics – including primary challenger Ned Lamont – who say Lieberman has a habit of straying from the party when it suits him.

He broke with the region’s Democratic senators on a key energy vote last year. He has embraced a position on Iraq that few Democrats share. He has questioned bedrock Democrat-backed programs such as affirmative action and Social Security. He voted against a filibuster that could have blocked the nomination of Supreme Court Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr.

And just this week the senator launched his own political party so he can still run in November even if Democratic voters rebuff him in the Aug. 8 primary.

Holy Joe offers up some "courage of my convictions" blather but it’s less than convincing. He votes with his own party when it doesn’t matter, and sides with the GOP to savage progressive causes when it does and the scorecards he quotes do not reflect this obvious fact.  Kudos to Lightman for highlighting that.

.   More Choicepoint:  The Journal-Inquirer recently had a good article about how Lieberman tried to fob off bundled contributions from defense industry contractor employees as "individual contributions" in a fundraising letter to his supporters.  The military industrial complex certainly knows how to get it’s money’s worth, doesn’t it?

Raphael J. Sonenshein, writing in the Jewish World Journal, has one of the more insightful articles about Lieberman’s complicity with the Bushies you are likely to read:

The Bush-Cheney team reviles Democrats of all stripes, whether left, right or center. Bush, however, has a long history of picking out and cultivating individual Democrats, like a wolf culling a weak sheep from the safety of the flock. That way, no concessions need to be made to Democrats, generally, while the impression of bipartisanship remains.

On Medicare, Bush played on Sen. Ted Kennedy’s (D-Mass.) ego to get the reform ball rolling, and then cut him out of the negotiations over the final Republican bill. For a while, the tame Democrat was Sen. Zell Miller of Georgia, until he began to look like a nut case.

And now, the best catch of all has been the eyes-wide-shut Lieberman who, unlike the others, has built a career out of being the wise and thoughtful centrist revered by the media talking heads.

Lieberman seems to be genuinely baffled and indeed petulant that his fellow Democrats won’t let him have it both ways: To say he is a strong Democrat with a largely progressive record and to work hand-in-glove with the White House to denigrate his own long-suffering and battered party.

Well worth the click through, the article concludes "this is really about the consequences of Lieberman wanting to have his cake and eat it, too."

Spreading the Misery:  The Journal Inquirer also has a good piece up about how Lieberman has put Chris Dodd’s nuts in a vice with his sad desperation:

If Lamont wins by a small margin, Dodd may not feel pressured to speak out much in the race. But if Lamont wins by a healthy margin, Dodd may be asked to support Lamont.

Pelto added that Connecticut’s Democratic candidates for U.S. House also may not appreciate Lieberman waging an independent campaign and drawing voters’ gaze off the Democratic line in the voting booth.

I’ve said it before but I’ll say it again — the Dems running for Congress are extremely angry and Holy Joe’s Cut-and-Run campaign.  I wrote about it here, but it bears repeating:  Joe’s selfishness puts three hotly contested Congressional seats at risk, and threatens Democratic control of Congress in November. 

.  Finally, the popular Kiss Float will be traveling around Connecticut and making more public appearances.   We will be there.