CRAWFORD, Texas — Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut says he can win reelection as an "independent Democrat." But his primary defeat signaled that the label may be a contradiction in terms: Many Democrats are hungry not for independents but for junkyard-dog fighters who will counter the aggressive tactics they see from the Republican Party and the Bush administration.
That sentiment now suggests that a partisan Washington may become even more divided.
The Horror! Ya know, I've been waiting twenty-five years as the Partisan Crevasse yawned, through the most corrupt administration in history, through the hunting of the "liberal" Bill Clinton, through the near-quadrupling of the national debt under a President who had run--for sixteen years!--on the scandal of the National Debt, through the biggest picking of American pockets in history, through lobbyists and industry groups writing the legislation that allowed them to do that and more, through a sham Congressional "revolution" by "citizen" legislators, through the censure of a Speaker of the House led by a man who then became Speaker himself and did the very same thing, through the filibustering of one President's nominees by a party which, in power scant months later, tried to eliminate the filibuster, through God knows what legislative shenanigans from the most corrupt House of Representatives in the history of the Republic, to a Bush administration for which any adjective of opprobrium is hopelessly insufficient, and I finally hear specific concerns about partisanship only when Holy Joe Lieberman loses a primary. And the irony of that is, by this point I'm in favor of a widening crevasse, or at least no longer worried about it; we've got enough justifiable candidates for Dropping Down One that we'll fill it back up in no time.