Kevin Rennie (a columnist for the Hartford Courant) is guest-posting at Political Wire this week. I found this piece via Atrios, and there are a few things worth some dissection. To begin, there is the first paragraph:
Sen. Joseph Lieberman (D-CT) will shake up his campaign staff if he loses Tuesday’s Democratic primary to challenger Ned Lamont. Lieberman supporters have watched with growing dismay since the spring as the three term senator’s campaign has gone from oblivious to defensive. They expect to reap a bitter harvest in 6 days.
So, let me get this straight: first of all, Joe Lieberman is placing the blame for any loss squarely on the shoulders of his campaign staff? As though his own record, actions, and finger wagging had nothing to do with the shift in public sentiment?
That’s like the villain in the Scooby Doo cartoons after he gets caught pretending to haunt a house yelling "If it weren’t for all the people who inadequately stitched the seams in my swamp monster costume, those meddling kids would have been completely fooled. I, of course, bear no responsibility for the inadequate planning for my horror carnival scheme, my fake lighting trick, the cheesy faux cobwebs and spooky music record that skips at the worst possible time, and the fact that a high school girl in glasses can foil my plot week in and week out. Nope, that blame is someone else’s entirely."
And, honestly, are we to believe that the Lieberman campaign has just thrown up its hands and expects to lose — or is this just a big peddling of low expectations in the hopes that all of Ned Lamont’s supporters will buy the crapola and not work their butts off for the next six days? Well, I’m not buying.
But let’s read on, shall we?
Expect Lieberman to can anyone who was associated with 2004 Kerry campaign and replace them with a team of pungent veterans who will take the fight to Lamont. As Lieberman tours the broiling state, you can almost hear the gloves coming off in preparation for a fight to the finish in November.
Here we learn that Joe Lieberman hired a bunch of
incredibly successful Kerry campaign consultants to run his really energizing Bus to Nowhere campaign concept? (Well, that’s actually believable, isn’t it? Next…)
But Joe Lieberman is saving his fight for after the primary? Clearly, that whole "I want to win the Democratic primary" thing had so much meaning for him. So the fight to the finish for him is (a) after he loses the Democratic primary, because what the hell do the Democratic voters matter to him when he has Republicans to look forward to down the line or (b) it’s a veiled threat that he’s having to lean more and more heavily on Republicans and…well, as an Independent, he’ll be able to vote however he pleases. (Because, you know, he’s such a Democratic stalwart, fighting on the ramparts for the party now, isn’t he?)
The last bit of the article goes into detail about how much monetary and other support Lieberman is getting from Republicans already. Which is what has me asking questions: is this article on the level that Lieberman is expecting a loss? Or is this something else entirely?
And what’s with the use of the word "pungent" to describe the potential new Lieberman staffers? Is that some sort of code for "stock up on the garlic, kids, because this one isn’t going quietly into the night?" Someone ought to let Chuck Schumer know that he’s created a monster…
UPDATE: When reading the comments, I sometimes have one of those "damn! Why didn’t I think of that?!?" moments. Reader jt has just given me one of those, piercing the veil as my tired brain could not, to see something very cleverly hidden in plain sight:
Rennie’s listening to someone trying to help Lieberman duck blame for staff departures. If Lieberman loses the primary and campaign (or staff) people leave, it’s probably because they believe in their party and don’t want to run against a Dem, not because Lieberman doesn’t want them around.
Spot on, jt. Damn! Why didn’t I think of that myself?!? Glad someone’s still caffeinated and ready to think.