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Lieberman won't have to trudge through blizzard for Senate vote

By Paul Kane
Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) will not be making a long walk through Saturday's blizzard to save the $626 billion Pentagon spending bill, having been assured by Republicans that he can spend the Sabbath at home in Connecticut.

Lieberman, an orthodox Jew who refuses take cars on Saturdays, when he generally does not work unless compelled to do so, has returned home to Connecticut to celebrate the Jewish holidays with family. Lieberman will not be on hand for the expected Saturday morning vote on the Defense Department's budget.

In normal times, this would not create any issue, but these are not normal times.

Pro-war Republicans, after years of pillorying Democrats as against the troops, tried early Friday to filibuster the defense bill in an effort to delay consideration of the health-care bill. Democrats had to produce all 60 senators in their caucus to break the first filibuster attempt by Republicans, after which three GOP senators rushed up to cast their votes along with the military.

Last Saturday, facing a similar 60-vote threshold on a different bill funding much of the federal government, Lieberman went to his synagogue for morning services in Georgetown, then walked 3.5 miles on a blustery morning to the Capitol to cast the decisive vote for Democrats.

Such a venture this Saturday could have been perilous, given that a massive snowstorm is barrelling down on Washington and the first of several votes is slated for 7:20 a.m.

But Republicans have given Lieberman the necessary assurances that they will allow him to be with his family."After being assured by Democratic and Republican leaders that his vote was not needed to pass the Defense Appropriations bill, Senator Lieberman went to Connecticut to spend the Sabbath and the last night of Hanukkah with his wife, Hadassah, and their children and grandchildren," Marshall Wittman, Lieberman's spokesman, said Friday.

However, Democrats could be in an odd jam if the storm turns worse than expected and airports remain closed through Sunday, since Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) hopes to hold the first key test vote on health-care legislation by 1 a.m. Monday.

By Paul Kane  |  December 18, 2009; 9:30 PM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency , Health Care  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Ben Nelson's Medicaid concerns questioned
Next: Obama and McCain duel over health care in radio addresses


Wow. 3.5 miles! Was probably good for him to get out in nature like that. Everyone needs that time.

Posted by: nmcallister | December 21, 2009 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Why is this "news" about Lieberman's walk on blustery day or taking a day off to be with his family?

Who cares??

Posted by: jolandakp | December 21, 2009 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Joe Lieberman is an AMERICAN CANCER !

We will NOT forget JOE !


Posted by: PulSamsara | December 21, 2009 2:41 AM | Report abuse

For Health Care Bill updates and other Obama Administration relevant issues check out this site i found:

very informative and worth reading!

Posted by: obwatch | December 21, 2009 1:29 AM | Report abuse

PERSONAL TO SEN. LIEBERMAN (Staff: Please forward.)

Such a shonda, your flip-flop on the Medicare expansion and your self-centered grand-standing.

Nisht hobn solstu keyn guts!

Unless -- you use your Homeland Security Committee chairmanship to do something about THIS:



• Regional Homeland Security- administered fusion centers use a nationwide microwave/laser radiation "directed energy" weapons system employing cell towers and satellites to silently torture, impair, subjugate unconstitutionally "targeted" Americans and their families -- an American genocide hiding in plain sight.
OR (if links are corrupted / disabled): RE: "GESTAPO USA"

Posted by: scrivener50 | December 19, 2009 10:45 PM | Report abuse

Interesting that "Republicans have given Lieberman the necessary assurances that they will allow him to be with his family."

I also guess that being an orthodox Jew, Senator Lieberman doesn't consider the cars of the train in direct conflict with his beliefs.

Posted by: helloisanyoneoutthere | December 19, 2009 6:51 PM | Report abuse

Senator McCain has become worthless like his other Republican mates. The Republicans had all the chances in the world to contribute to the Health Care Reform...they chose not to. McCain is FOS.

Posted by: halfowler | December 19, 2009 6:20 PM | Report abuse

Amazing, the GOP wanted to block a senate Defence bill, just as brave American men and women are in Iraq and Afghanistan, all because of the Health Care Reform bill..Americans know now, if they didin't before, that the GOP is out of ideas, plans, goals. The GOP has nothing to offer the nation..

Posted by: ruraledcomm | December 19, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse

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