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Joe Lieberman (Probably) Won't Support a Filibuster Against Health-Care Reform

That, at least, is what he told the New Haven Register.

Lieberman said he was “inclined to let the motion to proceed” (or cloture) go forward, but “I haven’t decided yet.”

That's not what you say when you're looking to filibuster.

By Ezra Klein  |  October 16, 2009; 1:34 PM ET
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Why does he fill me with so much more loathing that I feel for the Republicans?

Curse you, Al Gore!

Posted by: AZProgressive | October 16, 2009 1:54 PM | Report abuse

I recall all the assurances he offered to Democratic voters when running against Ned Lamont -- and how he reneged on most of them. As many of us long-time Lieberman watchers can attest, you can't trust anything that comes out of that man's mouth, especially when he's telling it to a Connecticut newspaper.

Naivete, thy name is Ezra.

Posted by: scarlota | October 16, 2009 2:05 PM | Report abuse

I find the closing sentences made by the first two comments [AZProgressive and scarlota] truly puzzling.

I agree with the content of those comments until the last sentence, and then I scratch my head.

Posted by: bcbulger | October 16, 2009 2:12 PM | Report abuse

But he'll make sure that the cameras are around for him to tease them some more.

Posted by: pseudonymousinnc | October 16, 2009 4:15 PM | Report abuse

I don't have an opinion on what Lieberman will ultimately do on the bill but I have to point out that cloture on the "motion to proceed" is not the same as cloture on the underlying bill. The motion to proceed gets you on to the bill so amendments can be considered. You need cloture on the underlying measure, essentially on a motion to pass the bill, to get to the final vote. Getting on to bills is easy in the Senate - cloture on motions to proceed are often carried with over 80 votes - getting off the bills is much harder. I don't read Lieberman's statement as addressing the second vote.

Posted by: DCMike | October 16, 2009 4:28 PM | Report abuse

The cloture vote for the motion to proceed is not the same as the cloture vote for final passage. Proceeding just allows debate to get started. Evan Bayh also said at one point that he would be with the party on the procedural votes prior to the one for final passage even if he wasn't with them on the bill. But he would not vote for cloture on the final bill if he didn't agree with it.

Posted by: JonShields31 | October 16, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

This is a good sign. It means Lieberman has been reminded where his bread is buttered and that he stands to lose the chairmanship if he goes with the filibuster. The only thing waiting for him if he stabs the Dems in the back is the outer darkness where there will be the weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Posted by: cmpnwtr | October 16, 2009 4:39 PM | Report abuse

No, that's what you say when you're open to the best offer from either side - or the biggest contributor.

Posted by: adagio847 | October 16, 2009 4:48 PM | Report abuse

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